Christians have way-too-much self-acceptance,

for our level of self-awareness.  Self-acceptance without unusual self-awareness is what Jesus referred to as the “leaven of the Pharisees” — imagining one is a good guy, a God-follower, when in fact, we are the evil, the wicked — followers of ourselves, willful, agendafied, defensive, proud, competitive, judgmental, confident-we-know-what’s-best, wise in our own eyes, leaning on our own understanding.  Hypocrites we are.  This lack of self-awareness plagues all humans, but in my experience, organized religion, including the Christian religion, undermines self-awareness because we wanna BE better, DO better.  Performance-idolatry weirds humans.

Only those Christians with unusual self-awareness need to be grown in self-acceptance.  This is exacerbated by the lack of self-awareness in Christian leaders, and the resultant dishonesty in the Church, so that Christians with unusual self-awareness feel like losers, failures, unworthy, unqualified for leadership.  Self-contempt, not self-acceptance.  Pride, not humility.

Christians with unusual self-awareness need a lot of Gospel-centered teaching/preaching/reading, so hopefully as the Spirit works over time, they have a sufficiently deep foundation of grace — Gospel-awareness, to be able to look even-FURTHER inside and recognize the pride in their lack of self-acceptance.  A humble believer cares NOTHing for his own worthiness, finding the imputed worthiness of Jesus to be more than ENOUGH.

In my experience, the Gospel-awareness that can facilitate unusual self-awareness and self-acceptance is not enough to produce happiness — love, joy, peace.  Sovereignty-awareness is also needed as a believer goes through each day, especially harrrrd days.

So what offers hope to Christians with way-too-much self-acceptance and not-nearly-enough self-awareness?  Only the convicting work of the Spirit of Jesus, enabling believers to look deeply inside and see the awful truth about ourselves.  It’s just too scary to look inside without a growing foundation of grace so there is Gospel-awareness throughout the day.  Serge’s Mentored Sonship Course has been used of Jesus to grow Gospel-awareness in many Christians, and though it only provides a beginning, I highly recommend it.  Not Sonship, but MENTORED Sonship.  Even so, far-more self-awareness is needed, over a long time, to grow Christians who are Jesus-dependent ENOUGH to be reproducers — contagious to the seculars around us.  In my not-so-humble opinion.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, who has no idea how to help nonChristians with unusual self-awareness grow in self-acceptance, because the Gospel of God’s unconditional love for forgiven sinners provides enormous acceptance/security/safety

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How to get peace that passes understanding.

The other-worldly peace that is vastly superior to the circumstance-dependent peace provided by human understanding/wisdom that is always momentary, always fleeting, so the believer is like a wave of the sea, tossed to and fro.  Only Jesus-dependents experience this other-worldly peace.

So how do I become more Jesus-dependent, more DumbSheepDave, more humble, less INdependent, less ShepherdDave, less proud?  Impossible, apart from the Spirit’s freshly convicting me of the sin of INdependence/confidence-I-know-what’s-best.  CONFESSion when convicted, is the starting place for fresh faith/dependency/humility.  I can ASK for the Spirit, claiming the promise of Luke 11 that if we ASK for the Spirit, He will give us His Spirit — fresh conviction of sin.  And it’s good to surrender the timetable in which He answers, because I dunno what’s best for me, and I believe a little bit that my SovereignShepherdJesus DOES.  So it’s also good to CONFESS my unbelief in His sovereign reign over every detail of my life.  Ahhhh.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, convinced that Christians — including DAVE, would be way-more fruitful with seculars if we were experiencing more of this peace that passes understanding

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Why does obedience feel good?

Because I know it’s the right thing, and I love feeling like a wonderful Christian.  Problem is, when I fail in any way, I feel like a loser/failure, and when I’m bummed by my failure, my dissatisfaction with Jesus and His imputed worthiness is EXPOSED, and I no longer imagine myself a wonderful Christian.  Grace is not for wonderful Christians.  Grace is for failures.  Only sinners qualify for grace.  Jesus is only helpful — has something to offer, to sinners, failures.

Thank You, Jesus, for the work of Your Spirit EXPOSING my real flesh to myself.  My Christian life is all about ME and my performance, not You and Your imputed performance.  Thank You that grace is for sinners, and that I QUALIFY for grace, because I’m such a great example of a bad example of a Christian.  Your Spirit’s fresh work provides me with fresh grace/humility/self-acceptance that enables me to be freshly dead to my flesh and its desires.  Ahhh.  Problem is, it doesn’t last long, because my hungry-needy flesh is vulnerable to the performance-addicted world around me, outside the Church, and inside too.  So I never stop needing Your Spirit’s work in my life.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, promoting Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness to Christians, especially DAVE, so we might actually have the joy and peace seculars want

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Your circumstances are not YOUR problem,

they are Jesus’ problem.  You are NOT in charge of your life.  He is.  You are not alone in all that you face today.  Jesus has this.  CONFESS your lack of curiosity and expectancy as to what He does NEXT, in you, others, circumstances, so you can experience afresh the other-worldly peace that is so-vastly superior to that produced by human understanding.  And if after CONFESSing, you still don’t have this amazing peace, I’m guessing there is yet-MORE unbelief you are not-yet aware of.  So ASK for the Spirit afresh, and claim the promise in Luke 11 that if we ask for the Spirit, He will give us His Spirit: fresh conviction of sin.  And surrender the timetable as to when the promise will be answered.  Maybe instantly, maybe not.  You don’t know what’s best, but He DOES.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, preaching to himself, so he might have something the seculars around him might actually WANT

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When I’m freshly undone, contrite, sane,

because of the Spirit’s fresh conviction of my pride/INdependence/worldliness, I enjoy everyone just as we are, and everything just as it is, all according to the genius plan of SovereignShepherdJesus.  I ooze with patience.  Otherwise, I’m JudgeDave, CompetitiveDave, secretly analyzing, critiquing, judging, looking for ways to feel/be superior to everyone everywhere, yearning for opponents to FAIL, humiliate themselves, in sporting events, politics, or other areas of life.  NO mercy/compassion, except for MY side, MY team, folks who agree with ME. And strangely, NO compassion for myself — for JudgeDave, who is even harder on himself than others, cruel taskmaster, always wanting to be better.  Pride, not humility.  But like all leaders, politicians, gifted at APPEARing humble, compassionate, merciful, wonderful.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, always needing a fresh work of the Spirit so he experiences fresh sanity — fresh love for self, others, Jesus, and His genius plan

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A humble believer doesn’t get

weary of confessing.  Only the proud believer.  The humble believer is focused on Jesus’ performance — the proud believer, on his own performance.  I don’t know any humble believers.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships

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Why do you have harrrrd today?

You are being retrained in Jesus-dependency, and you NEED the harrrd, because easy has never done anything for your Jesus-dependency.  Why do others have easIER than you?  Domatter.  Quit focusing on them, and focus on YOUR need, due to your off-the-charts confidence-you-know-what’s-best.  This INdependence in you is being slowly rooted out, and being replaced by a dependency on Jesus — where you embrace like never before, your cluelessness-you-know-what’s-best.  Jesus is causing you to be more-and-more disillusioned with your flesh’s interpretation of reality.  Your flesh has you convinced that it knows what’ll make you happy, or happIER.  You need more disillusionment, and that’s why you have harrrd.  All your friends and family would vote for much easIER for you, but we dunno anymore than our flesh knows, and your flesh knows, about how to make you happIER.  Jesus knows.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, preachin to himself again, cuz he forgets

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Thank You, Jesus, that I dunno how

to live in Your world, but am an expert at living in Dave’s world, where everything is run by us humans, especially DAVE.  Thank You, that if I’m not rescued from myself — rescued from this prison, that I’ll go through my day feeling that my life is up to ME.  Thank You that all my knowledge from 76 years of living on Planet Earth, does not enable me to live in Your world as a Jesus-dependent, that I need Your Spirit freshly convicting me of the sin of INdependence.  PRISON BREAK.  Thank You that I’m such a great example of a bad example of a Jesus-dependent.  Thank You that grace is for INdependents whose INdependence has been revealed to them by Your Spirit, so they can CONFESS and be momentarily DEpendent, sane, at peace.  Ahhh.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, needy as ever for the Spirit’s fresh work, so the seculars around him might be drawn to the Jesus in him

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