I had a meal with a young man some time ago.
He opened up to me that he has been trying to measure up to his parents expectations but he just couldn’t. Unfortunately, this has been carried over to his relationship with Jesus. He told me that growing up, when he doesn’t make it to a particular grade, his father gets upset. Worse, he gets compared with his siblings.
This is not an isolated situation.
Having been a kids pastor for 11 years before, I have heard kids being told that if they don’t make it to second honor, they will not go to Hong Kong Disneyland. Now, that’s pressure. The whole family vacation was placed on the shoulders of that particular 3rd grade student.
This is why the gospel is so freeing.
The redemption story is indeed redeeming.
Jesus destroys any performance orientation embedded in our psyche.
He accomplished what we couldn’t.
He performed what we were unable to.
He finished what we couldn’t even sustain.
Jesus said, “It is finished.” (John 19:30)
If we are unable to wrap our brains around this, we will end up trying to please our Heavenly Father to gain His favor.
Remember, if you are a child of God, you don’t have to try to gain His favor. You ALREADY have His favor through Christ.
Jesus loves you the way you are.
But He loves you too much to let you remain the way you are.
Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God. Romans 15:7