Martin Luther spent the greater part of his young life trying to live up to his father’s expectations of him, his peers’ opinions of him and the church’s requirements of him. He thought that if only He was a better person, lived a pious life, said more prayers, beat himself up both mentally and physically he just might measure up. When the scriptures were finally revealed to Him, he realized that everything had already been done. His sin had been paid for – his place in heaven was guaranteed – his eternal life assured. Nothing that he could do would ever match that.
So often we go through life trying to meet the “standard” of perfection. We dress the right way, we go to church, we help others, we take care of our families. Our lives seem perfect – or are they? Do we feel defeated when we don’t fit the mold for success? Do we give up when we just can’t take the everyday stresses of life? Do we belittle ourselves until people finally agree with us?
God doesn’t want us to live that way. He is the One who made us. If we give up on ourselves, we are in fact giving up on Him too. His hands formed us. He breathed the breath of life into us. He walks with us every day. He has a plan for our lives. He has also prepared perfection for our lives after death. Because of that amazing gift, we give thanks through our deeds. Our works are done not to buy our salvation, but because of our gratitude for what has been done for us.
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. ” Ephesians 2:10
Lord, because of Your love for me, I have been made perfect in Your sight. When I start getting down on myself, remind me of Your constant presence in my life. Help me to remember how much You gave to buy me back. In Jesus name, I pray. Amen!