A Little Taste of The Glory


 "I've heard several pastors and teachers over the years compare the law to a mirror. If I have dirt on my  face, I go to the mirror and it shows me truth. The mirror isn't bad it simply reveals what is there. At the same time, the mirror itself has no power to clean my face. It would be foolish to take the mirror from the wall and rub my face with it trying to clean off the dirt. But that's what good girls do with the law. We believe that by keeping it, we will somehow gain favor.

 So why would a holy God give an impossible standard to a group of born failures who, no matter how sincere or how dedicated or how determined could never ever live up to it? God should have known we couldn't fulfill those expectations  But the secret of the law was not to prove our inadequacy for Gods sake. It was to prove our inadequacy for our sake." (Chapter 6)

Last year, I did a class called SHAPE that our church offers. In it, we did a personality profile called strength finders. Two of my strengths are discipline and responsibility. It was especially pleasing to hear from the instructor that I was in the camp of about only 3% of the population. Very few have both of those as strengths! I'm not gonna lie, a lot of pride over being 'unique' filled my heart. I was the disciplined AND responsible one! Bam. In. Yo. Face.

Yet, if I'm honest, most of my life I've kept up a "this is the cross I have to bear" mentality. Other people find freedom in Christ and that's great! It's because us responsible, disciplined people are still keeping the law up.   We're like Job-making sacrifices for you children while you go party.

Whenever the Gospel was preached  about how we now have freedom from sin and with that freedom from the expectations of the law-I said "yes, praise you Jesus!" and used it as a talking piece. But after that bit,  my heart always reminds me" but there's still a law. After all Jesus didn't abolish it-he came to fulfill it, and since I'm his child, I have to too."

If you haven't caught on yet, the last two and a half paragraphs are my heart twisting the gospel to feed my own pride and convince myself I'm awesome.

Put plainly, I've missed the whole point of Jesus coming. " But the secret of the law was not to prove our inadequacy for Gods sake. It was to prove our inadequacy for our sake." When I read that it sort of hit me in the face. Mostly because that confuses me and angers me. Why would God give us this? Why would he give me something that would constantly leave me feeling so much like a failure, especially when he knew I, like the Israelites would confidently say: 

"Yes Lord! I will be careful to do everything you require!" (Exodus 24:3)

And that's been where my heart has been this week. I've been struggling through and finding glimpses of a God who spent several hundred years demonstrating one thing: without him I am nothing. That, and he isn't interested in a performance. And while I've come to this conclusion countless times before, the lies I've built (quite well I might add) are something I constantly run back to. My old understanding of God is comfortable-even if its a lie. And my old understanding of our 'agreement:'he gives me salvation and feel-good feelings when I do something right and then reminds me of his grace when I fail-is preferable. Why? Because I get all the glory and worship when I succeed-and I can rely on his blood when I don't. (And I can throw a fit over how its impossible to live up to his standards when I'm feeling particularly sorry for myself.)

I ask God: If the law isn't your expectation, then what IS it? He then  reminds me of the gospel-That Jesus fulfilled all expectations with his perfect life. That then, by dying on the cross he took all punishment for my sins and in exchange, through belief in him I stand before God as blameless. He reminds me that a relationship with him means surrender of self, reputation, trying to win his favor and in exchange I get to take on a new identity as His. But then I retort like a snotty nose kid after being told the greatest news EVER: "yeah, but after that!"

The gospel is enough. There is nothing more. I know  that every action I do is still filthy rags. I know that everything done on my own accord is not worship to him its worship to self-and it doesn't honor him. I know all that. But I don't like it. Why?! because I don't like that he isn't impressed by me. I want to hear "By Golly, Brittany YOU are a fine creation. Everyone should notice you and be impressed with you and try to emulate you, because I want to!! Wow! Why don't we worship you instead!?"

Now its dramatic, I know. But its at the core of what I'm wanting. 

As the best character to ever grace my T.V. Screen, Nacho Libre asks:

 Don't You want a little taste of the Glory? See what it tastes like?!

Yes Nacho. I do.

"Therefor the law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith" (Galatians 3:24)

"But now a righteousness from God, apart from the law, has been made known to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe." (Romans 3:21-22)

"The Law says obey. Grace says believe and obedience follows." -Emily Freeman

 "Grace is not Jesus helping you live up to the law. This keeps us focused on the law. Jesus came to fulfill the law so we don't have to look at it anymore. I no more listen to what the law is saying. I listen to what Jesus is saying." -Dudley Hall

I'm hanging out in a place of tension. I'm tasting resignation and surrender of my prideful, sinful self and I'm discovering that while this girl may not struggle today to not go and say a few blips of profanity or lust after some hunk of man, its a full-blown knock-out-fight- to not try to take this body, home, self,  spouse, kid, and stuff and say MINE and then use all of it to glorify myself. I'm recognizing, perhaps for the first time, my 'trying to please Jesus' for what it is: a complete rejection of the Gospel. Its nasty sin masked as christiandom.

 This is hard.  This is all I've ever known.  But its time. I struggle to make sense of a battle to find rest. 

As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful naturea and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. 4But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do..
 (Ephesians 2:1-10)

Praise Jesus that through him I'm winning. That what he promises is so much better. That I can be done with all of this and when I stand before Jesus and everyone else daily I can point to Him and its enough.

This book: Grace for the Good Girl by emily freeman, has been oh-so-good for me. I'd recommend it to just about everyone. Its possible every girl I've ever met will be getting this for Christmas.  In the meantime, if you happen to buy this via online or otherwise, I'd welcome you to join in the party in this online-book club #thesamepage  It can be found here


  1. "Filthy rags" was such a good reminder for me today. This whole post is incredible....so authentic. Thanks, friend!

  2. This? What you've written here? This is profoundly Gospel-centered. When you say "I'm hanging out in the place of tension" might I suggest that will be your new place to live? As I've begun to really understand grace and the law and the purpose and meaning of both, life has become a lot more mysterious. This is good, but can also feel...out of my control?

    All that to say, I love your post. Thank you for writing it.