I find myself falling into the self-righteous trap. It begins innocently enough. I am having a conversation with someone, trying to share my own struggle with injustices in our world. I attempt to stand for morality and holiness. The conversation escalates. Suddenly, I start trying to justify myself. I find it necessary to defend my convictions. This is done with the best of intentions, but it often leads to an ugly skirmish with my neighbor. After the conversation, I feel gross and defiled. I repent. I regret starting the conversation.
The defense of my character is a form of self-righteousness. I have no need to prove myself to anyone. In fact, I don't even have the power. Jesus is my defender. I can't fight my own battles. He is the only one who can unveil my holiness. My righteousness is found in Him alone. It has nothing to do with my fervor or my poorly chosen words. God is the one who calls me beautiful. He knows me completely. He knows my sick heart. He has heard my constant cry for justice and His return. He offers me a wedding dress, which the enemy can never steal or taint.
I try to avoid self-righteousness at all cost, but I fail at times. I must patiently wait for the Lord's vindication. I can no longer justify myself before men. Their praises are worthless. My acceptance is found in His embrace. I have this image of His restored kingdom. My life is hidden in Him. I know the glories that await me. This life is but a shadow.