If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
1 John 1.8
I think that complacency, a satisfaction with how we are today, is one of the things that is most antithetical to the gospel. Why? Because if the gospel is the message by which we are saved, the message of a coming kingdom, the message of how we are able to one day be perfect, how then can we think ourselves at any time to be okay, to not grasp how distant we are, though coming closer, from the holiness of God. It is not possible and it is a lack of complacency that helps us grow and at the same time instills in our heart a spirit of humbleness.
I find it remarkable that a common comment when parting for a long period of time is to “not change.” Such a statement, while perhaps heartfelt, clings to falsity because change will occur and it is up to the person as to whether that change will be for better or worse. In a similar manner, we as Christians should never be content to stay where we are today. If I were someone that knows you, I hope that you’re significantly different in a year or ten or twenty from now because if I knew you well, I’m sure I know of some of your flaws. Pride perhaps? Selfishness? A lack of compassion? Because we are on this earth we are not yet perfect because our flesh wars against the spirit. Christ is sufficient for all we need, but we should also earnestly desire holiness. Being Christian doesn’t mean we are without wants, no much more than this we desire Christ, for all that is good comes from him, and all else is sin.
Sanctification is becoming more like Christ. And because Christ is the light that illumines everyone, we are also children of light. This is the primary reason that we should never be complacent with our lives as Christians. The darkness cannot overcome light, because light illumines the darkness and makes that which was once hidden seen. See Christians draw closer to the light, only to be repulsed when that light finally shows the blackness of our own hearts. It is like driving into the sun where the brightness of the sun illuminates every single invisible smudge on a window that is perhaps otherwise visibly clean. In the darkness, the spots are invisible, as perhaps our spots are to those who might know us because we hide our deficiencies. However, when the light of Christ, the illumination of scripture, and the conviction of the spirit takes a hold of our hearts, we can only struggle with the unholiness of our being compared to the radiance of Christ’s light. When we draw close to the light, we can only be brought down, and so we become humble. We cannot enforce humility, but it is a natural outcome of someone who truly desires Christ, for we know that we must esteem others more highly than ourselves looking to the example of the cross, where the King was made into sin itself so that we might become the righteousness of God.
God is the Father of Lights. He grants us all things, and it is through him that we are able to become more like Christ. It is something that we should earnestly desire because it is who we are as Christians, the people of Christ. Let us all seek to bear his name more fully each and every day with our path illuminated by scripture as we venture to reach the marvelous light of Bunyan’s Celestial City. Let us never be content with “good enough” because we have not already attained unto perfection and let us earnestly press towards the mark of the high calling of God.