It seems to me that part of the Church has a good grasp on how the Gospel so wonderfully relieves us from the pressure to measure up when we face our ongoing weaknesses and failures, and part of the Church has a good grasp on how radically empowering and transformative the Gospel is. But the two camps seem to only emphasize one of those messages, often downplaying the other side.
One side says we have been declared righteous and made “legally” justified before God — able to draw near to Him to experience compassion no matter how continuously rough and messy our lives are.
The other says we are dead to sin and free from its slavery by virtue of our co-crucifixion with Christ — now needing to learn who we are and discover how to walk in the victory that His finished work provides.
My vision is to disciple people who are firmly and continuously grounded in both realities. I want to see believers reveling in the wonder of God’s mercy towards them everyday — unashamed of their finiteness, woundedness, and capacity to “miss the mark”…. but not ultimately defining their own essential nature (or their expectations for the future) by anything other than who they already are in Christ (Galatians 2:20).