It’s Guest Post Fortnight on Known & Renowned! Today’s post was written by Shannon Potelicki. Shannon is a graduate of Taylor University’s acclaimed professional writing program. Her byline has appeared in various online and print publications. Besides Jesus, she love girliness, wordsmithery, and bad boys.
I love Jesus. I do. I like spending daily time with Him in prayer. I enjoy reading the Bible and talking about Him with others at Bible study. I feel His presence when I sing to Him in worship. When I write, there’s generally a Christian theme, whether I intended for there to be one or not—He’s embedded in my heart. I’ve experienced miracles in my life. I could tell you story after story of how He’s made provisions for me, protected me, healed me, empowered me, and saved me. I don’t just believe Christ is alive in working in my life, I KNOW He is.
And despite the fact that words like “I” and “my” and “me” are all over that first paragraph, nothing I’ve written there has anything to do with me. I can’t claim credit for any of it. The things I can claim credit for, I won’t list here. Partly because I don’t want to claim credit for those things, and partly because there wouldn’t be enough room on the Internet. I can assure you that if I did list them, this second paragraph wouldn’t lend support to my very first statement in this post: I love Jesus.
That fact has, at times, caused me to question my salvation. If I’m saved, why am I thinking X? Why am I saying Y? Why am I doing Z? Why, on a daily basis, do I catch myself displaying the OPPOSITE of the Fruits of the Spirit—which are supposed to be evidence of God’s work in my life? Why am I not . . . perfect?
Have you noticed that I’m super focused on me? I think that’s the problem.
Like Paul describes in Romans 7, I find myself at war within myself. I do sinful, awful things even though I know better. That’s what I do. In my pride, I want to make salvation about me too—my responsibility, something I can gain or lose.
So that it outweighs all of the crappy stuff I do.
So that I can save myself.
So that I . . . don’t NEED Jesus.
What I’m really saying when I question my salvation based on my own sinfulness is that I think it’s about me. I’m enough to get this salvation job done. I’m capable of being perfect. I’m saying that, although I may love Jesus as a friend, I don’t need Him as a Savior.
In those moments, I’m an idiot.
Because “all of [my] righteous acts are like filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6, NIV).
Because I can’t save myself.
Because I NEED Jesus.
Praise God, It’s not about me. Salvation is what Christ does FOR me.
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9, NIV).
*I realize this whole faith/works thing is WAY more complicated than this post makes it, and works certainly do play an important part (read the book of James for more on that). I just happen to struggle with this narcissistic/prideful/vain way of thinking, and wanted to explore this aspect of the issue.
– Shannon Potelicki
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