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November 29th, 2007

by Craig Groeschel

29 comments (+ Add)

Spiritual Esteem 4 (of 4)

I’m fairly certain I read the following thoughts somewhere. (I found these in an old journal, but I didn’t note the source. This sounds like something Tim Keller would say, but I’m not sure if it was him, my adaption of his words, or someone else.)

Let’s contrast false-esteem and spiritual-esteem:

False-Esteem: I do good things, therefore God accepts me.
Spiritual-Esteem: I’m accepted because of what Jesus did for me, therefore I do good things.

False-Esteem: I try hard, so God loves me.
Spiritual-Esteem: God loves me radically, so I try hard.

False-Esteem: I produce, therefore God is pleased.
Spiritual-Esteem: God is pleased with me in Christ, therefore He produces through me.

False-Esteem: Self is the center.
Spiritual-Esteem: God is the center.

What is the biggest thing God has shown you this week through this series of posts?

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there are a total of29
  1. Nov 29, 2007 at 6:03 am

    The biggest thing He’s shown me is that this is a journey to which I must be 100% committed if I’m to learn the valuable lessons that He attempts to teach me through the seemingly commonplace and mundane moments of everday life.

  2. Nov 29, 2007 at 7:11 am

    God has shown me (over and over) that He READ the “FINE� print when he made me and did not say “…OOOPS! Let’s throw that fish back in…it’s not big enough or good enough for me!�

    Instead, He says everyday, …I know you… I love you… Enjoy your life… Stop comparing… Let me deal with others… Come to me for your REAL worth! My problem is “Receiving� or accepting this blessing over my life daily. To believe is to receive as well!!! :)

  3. Nov 29, 2007 at 7:43 am

    It’s not about you, Hope … it’s about me. :)

  4. Nov 29, 2007 at 7:47 am

    That I just need to get out of the way. Plain and simple.

  5. Nov 29, 2007 at 7:49 am

    I agree w/ Hope and this week was a great reminder that: “It’s all about Him!”

    Another great reminder: “God is pleased with me in Christ, therefore He produces through me.” Yes Sir!

  6. Nov 29, 2007 at 7:51 am

    These posts have reminded me how hard I am on myself! I have to make a conscious effort to replace the lies with Truth, and be willing to accept for myself the grace that God so willingly gives me.

    Thanks for sharing your heart.

  7. Nov 29, 2007 at 8:03 am

    This series was right on with what I’ve been dealing with. I realized you can’t put new wine in old wineskins.

    Thanks for your prayers Craig, I resigned last night with no where to go.

  8. 9Mike
    Nov 29, 2007 at 8:18 am

    God gets the credit for everything, even our ability to choose to surrender our lives to Him.

  9. 10Ted
    Nov 29, 2007 at 8:23 am

    This whole series has hit me right between the eyes. I “know” this stuff, but living it is another story. Doing rural ministry, progress is ssslllloooowwww and therefore discouraging because things don’t happen quickly.

  10. Nov 29, 2007 at 8:29 am

    For me, I think the biggest impact of these posts has been realizing I’m one of many who struggles with this. I find comfort in knowing that those I respect can fall into the same trap I find myself in at times. But He is working in us all and showing us His desires for us. Lord, take ‘Libby’ out of the picture and help me to surrender all to you!

    ‘I will show you my faith by my good deeds.’ James 2:18c

  11. Nov 29, 2007 at 8:40 am

    i wanna know more about this line, “God is pleased with me in Christ.”

    why “in Christ?” God can’t just be pleased with me? is there something meaningful to this “in Christ” phrase i hear so much, or is it just one of those “christianese” phrases people say?

    if there’s something theological about it, i want to know it. but if it’s just filler, then it doesn’t make sense to me.

  12. Nov 29, 2007 at 9:04 am

    No matter what I do, great or wrong He loves me the same. The outcome may be different but the Love is the same. A overwhelming Love that is always there for me.

  13. Nov 29, 2007 at 9:06 am

    The biggest reminder, Craig, is that my Father in Heaven loves me fully and purely. My desire should be to live for Him, and not for the applause of a fallen world (even if it comes from folks with good intentions).

    Another key reminder is that if I have been entrusted to lead others, I need to be sure that I am speaking this truth into their lives AND living it for them to see.

    Thanks, again, Craig for the effort you put into these posts.

  14. Nov 29, 2007 at 9:17 am

    “I become hypercritical of others” - I never felt like I was focusing too much on myself. I just thought the way that I did ministry was the best - so I would criticize others and refuse to partner with other people because they weren’t up to snuff with where I was. (Even as I type this - I sound so arrogant - YIKES!)

    I’m trying to find Jesus in people and these posts just reminded me that I don’t have game - it’s God who wants to work through me. “You be natural, let God be supernatural” is what my old college president used to say. I’m learning that - and it’s HIS power that is doing the work.

  15. Nov 29, 2007 at 9:21 am

    Would you believe me if I told you it was me who said all that? Oh yeah, you’re encouraging honesty. Crap.

    Great blog this week. God loves us radically. I’m good with that.

  16. Nov 29, 2007 at 9:27 am

    i’ve learned i have a lot to learn…

    eric - i think it’s saying that because christ came to redeem us…we are new creations because of him…and because of that sacrificial grace, and because of the holy spirit’s work in our lives, god is pleased. he is pleased by our obedience…but we would have no desire to obey if it weren’t for christ to begin with.

    i am also no theologian, so take that for what it’s worth :)

  17. Nov 29, 2007 at 9:30 am

    I’m much too selfish.

    God is so great!

  18. Nov 29, 2007 at 9:54 am

    there is definately something very important to the “in christ” phrase he is using. Apart from christ we are hopeless and helpless, apart from christ all of our good works our like filthy rags before him, apart from christ we have nothing but hell to look forward to. There is no life apart from christ. If we are christians it is because christ lived the perfect life, died the death we should have died and rose again defeating death, satan, sin and demons. Jesus is everything. For it is only in christ that we stand justified before the father. If we are not in christ than matt 7 says that he will say “Depart from me, for i never knew you”

    eric, there is so much more and i would love to talk with you more about all of this if you would like, you can go to my site and email me and we could discuss this more thoroughly if you would like.

    love and justice

  19. Nov 29, 2007 at 10:10 am


    It does sound a bit Christianesse to me too. Maybe instead of “God is pleased with me in Christ” it should be stated, “Because of what Christ has done for me I can please God.”

    Remember, God is the One who makes you and us strong in Christ. God made us his chosen people. He put his mark on us to show that we are his, and he put his Spirit in our hearts to be a guarantee for all he has promised. 2 Corinthians 1:21-22 NCV.

  20. Nov 29, 2007 at 10:50 am

    How often we do really live for something other than Christ always amazes me. There are many who think it is possible to go sinless for a minute or 10 minutes or even an hour and etc. But I have to wonder if it’s a sin in God’s eyes to be living for something other than Him even for a split second.

  21. 23Ginger W
    Nov 29, 2007 at 12:15 pm

    During this week, when people gave me a compliment, I tried to always say something about how God gave me that gift/ talent/ ability. I enjoyed the different reactions I received from people who I know outside of the church. I should make an effort to do that more often, of course without sounding “churchy”. Thanks Pastor Craig!

  22. 24Carrie
    Nov 29, 2007 at 12:21 pm

    Thanks for the posts!! God has been showing me that it is Christ in me that makes me who I am. Whatever good I do it is Him through me not my own ability or talents.

  23. 25Stephen
    Nov 29, 2007 at 2:58 pm

    Sure it sounds Christianeze - but it is Biblical - a quick search found 91 times that ‘in Christ’ is found. For me the foundation of ‘in Christ’ is found in 2 Cor 5:21 - God made him who had no sin to be sin for us so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
    Our sins are transferred onto Christ, and his righteousness is transferred onto us. We no longer need to seek after our own reputation, appearance, or identity because when God sees us, he is actually seeing the righteousness of Christ - we are ‘IN Him’ (82x). When I realized this it my life began anew.

    Craig -it does sound like Keller - a great study is Gospel Transformation - World Harvest Mission - developed by some of Keller’s mentors/friends.



  24. Nov 29, 2007 at 3:40 pm

    It’s amazing how we love to turn grace into works. It’s like accepting the gift is harder than earning the impossible. Thanks for your thoughts.

  25. Dec 1, 2007 at 4:42 pm

    I would say the biggest thing I’ve learned through this series is that self-esteem is still an issue in my life and ministry. It’s one of those things where you think you have moved beyond particular aspects in dealing with it then you realize those issues are still present.

    Thanks for the post I appreciate your honesty and leadership.

  26. 28Anthony Villeneuve
    Dec 16, 2007 at 12:15 am

    I realised that I am myself And you are my thoughts.
    you are yourselves and i am not in your thoughts.
    you dont know me though you are part of me.
    you dont hear me though you make me speak.
    you do not see me though you are all that i see.
    if you are everything i must be nothing but together we are all and I am Him.

  27. 29Jared
    Oct 16, 2008 at 3:21 pm

    Similar thoughts:

    I was praying and asking God to let me grow closer to Him… I asked Him to do that so I could 1) worship Him more 2) draw closer to Him and 3) tell others about Him more richly.

    He shook me.
    He said, “No…”

    “You see, you’ve got it all wrong Jared. Flip it.”

    “Worship me more and you will grow closer to Me.
    Draw closer to me and you will grow closer to Me.
    Tell others about me more richly and you will grow closer to Me.”

    That’s how to do it.


    Thank you God for revealing that to me.