Mark Affleck

Are You a GOOD Christian?

May 21, 2024
Spiritual Growth

A social media fight captured my attention this past weekend that featured two people having a ferocious debate over the definition of a “GOOD CHRISTIAN.” It was simultaneously captivating and sad. I fought off the urge to jump into their intriguing duel and decided instead to write this blog.

This experience immediately transported me to a time early in my faith walk. Back then I thought the hopelessness that emasculated my identity in Christ was from not being a “Good Christian” like those who I thought never entertained a dark thought or made a mistake.

With this disconcerting backdrop that I was NOT a good Christian, I could not be expectant about what God might do in my life. I was VULNERABLE to sin and falling short of my potential in Christ. The scene was set for a bad ending to my story.

But things took a glorious and positive turn with God’s insight that my vulnerability–created by the lies dancing across my mind—had nothing to do with me being a “good Christian.” He showed me how that was a mythical illusion because the essence of our Christian faith is BEING MADE NEW IN CHRIST.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”  2 Corinthians 5:17

I also learned how that foundation empowers us to emulate Christ through the fruits of God’s Spirit–Faithfulness; Gentleness, Goodness; Peace; Patience; Self-Control; Love; Joy; and Kindness (Galatians 5:22-23).

A quick default definition for being a “Good Christian” in today’s culture is to read and study God’s Word; pray; tithe; fellowship with other believers; find your God-given purpose in life; and serve others to God’s glory.

Of course those are all crucial ingredients to our intimacy in Christ, joyful living, and spiritual growth.

But being a Christian is so much more than the sum of our activities. It is growing in love for Christ and allowing His Holy Spirit to transform our hearts and lives. That’s why I ask God to help me see signs that show a gap is forming between me and him. To give me the courage to confront my feelings of inadequacy with his truth about who I am in Christ—A NEW CREATION.

Are you allowing a gap to form between you and God that makes you vulnerable to sin and falling short of your full potential in Christ?

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