Pat's a good husband, so he let me go on for quite a while (he knows that sometimes I need to "talk it through" before I get to the part that makes any sense). At one point, he interjected and cautioned me. He reminded me that none of us can be good enough by trying harder, especially in our own strength. I'm not always the best wife, so I argued my point (I really like to be right) talking of things such as obedience, spiritual disciplines, and so on.
I don't say this very often...Pat, you were right. (And no, you may not print this off and frame it!)
Yes, the spiritual disciplines are important (reading the Bible, prayer, memorizing Scripture). Yes, obedience is of great consequence. But if these things are not done out of a soul-deep love of Jesus, the result will often be disappointment, frustration, and failure.
I want to be holy, but not holier-than-thou. I want to be righteous, but do not have to be right all the time. So I am going to stop trying to be good, or even good enough. I am going to stop expecting that of my family. Instead, I am going to return to my first love and let my heart be filled up with worship. Changed by adoration. Renewed with love. Consecrated by devotion. A transformation that will not fail.
And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. ~2 Corinthians 3:18