"I believe none of us is perfect. I believe no one is without some fault to hide." - Jane Eyre
I've talked to you about how we can't do anything to deserve our salvation. We can't take pride in it, because we didn't earn it. But I want to look at it from a slightly different angle.
As humans, we judge people. We look on the outside, where as God looks at the heart. We won't befriend someone because they look like they need a bath, or we won't talk to talk to someone because they aren't as popular or as good-looking as the people we want to hang out with.
We even judge people by their sins. "Whoa, Abbie is a wild girl! It must be really hard for God to love her." We rate sins. Some sins we think are worse than others, but in God's eyes the are all the same. Whether you've murdered someone or snapped at your dad, it's all sin and it all has to be punished.
When we think we are "good people" who don't sin a lot, or at least don't do any of the "really bad sins", we are wrong. We start to look at the people who don't carry that same "good Christian" image and we judge them. We place ourselves higher on God's friend list, when really, we're no better than the person we're judging.
We've all sinned; we've all fallen short. We can't feel better than anyone else because it was a gift; because we are not better than the next person.
My friend just thought of something. Instead of thinking of God's "friend list" as written vertically, with one person's name above another, think of it as horizontal, where all the names are equal. We are all beautiful in God's sight.
When you feel like you're falling short of what God wants for you, remember that God loves you just as much as someone who you think is perfect.