Preaching the Gospel to Yourself

In recent years there has been a surge of the idea to “preach the gospel to yourself”.  Jerry Bridges may have been one of the first writers to promote this idea but many others are now contributing to this Christian discipline.  The idea of preaching the gospel to ourselves is an excellent way to begin and continue living a gospel-centered life.  Let’s face it every day we are prone to forget two twin truths of the Bible – we are bigger sinners than we think but Jesus is a bigger savior then we thought.  When we see these two truths and gap between our unrighteousness and the righteousness of God, the cross of Jesus Christ becomes greater and greater.  As a result the beauty of the gospel becomes more glorious to us.

I was recently given the book Note to Self: The discipline of preaching to yourself by Joe Thorn.  This wonderful little book provides some excellent tools for preaching the gospel to ourselves on a daily basis.  I was struck today by the chapter titled “Jesus is enough” and Thorn’s reflections on Philippians 4:11-13.  Here is a little excerpt from that chapter.

I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.  I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound.  In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.  I can do all things through him who strengthens me.  Philippians 4:11-13

“Dear Self,

Are you satisfied?  It is pretty obvious that the answer is often no.  I am not saying it is wrong to want things in this life, but why do you find yourself so frustrated with the absence of those things?  The problem is not that you want evil things.  The things you want are generally good, or at least harmless in themselves. But more than wanting, you become frustrated by not having.  You become jealous, envious, and discontented with your life.  It is true; you need what you lack, but what you lack is satisfaction in Jesus.”

He goes on to say simply and profoundly that Jesus is enough and that nothing will take away our desire for satisfacation and cotentment.  In a day when contentment and satisfaction may be at an all time low what we need is not another adrenaline fix, another job, another house, another life, what we need is Jesus.  He is enough – what a wonderful gospel truth for today. 

Garrett Nates