Over the last few years I have taken to the practice of preaching the gospel to myself. When I first heard of this practice I have to confess that I was a bit mystified by what it meant, to “preach the gospel to yourself.” I thing that I figured it out, largely, when I found myself doing it and correctly labeled it as such.
Preaching the gospel to myself has served to encourage me in my putting to death the deeds of the flesh, as well as cementing the truth of the one and only, true gospel. Here are a few of the things that have been confirmed in my mind:
- I am a sinner. If I was an different, the sheer weight of my guilt and shame over my sin would be enough to change my behavior. The fact that I persist in sin can mean nothing other than that I am reprobate to my very core.
- If I am to change, someone else must change me.
- If someone else is to change me, it can only be God, for He is the only person who is not corrupt Himself.
- If He is just, He must judge my sin, and yet a human must be judged.
- Christ is the only one who fits both pairs of shoes.
When I preach to myself in this way, brokenness over my sin always leads me back to the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. As the hymn says “My hope is built on nothing less that Jesus’ blood and righteousness.” So true.
The gospel is eminently reasonable and wholly encouraging. It provides me something far greater than self-pity and my own boot-straps when dealing with my sin. Preach the gospel to yourself in this way. I hope it has the same effect on you as it does me.