Do you ever wonder why some Christians are so miserable? You have certainly asked the question, "How can a follower of Jesus be so... discontent, hyper-critical, envious, or proud?" Perhaps you have asked that of yourself. I know I have. I think there is one simple reason some Christians find themselves living such miserable existences, even if only for a period of time. We forget the grace and mercy of God. Simply put, the bitter, judgmental, discontent, and angry Christian is that way only when he loses sight of God's grace and mercy to him in Jesus Christ. Such unChristian temperaments are both the consequence and the cause of being overly focused on ourselves. One cannot be truly aware of God's goodness to them personally and remain embittered or proud. It's not just the presence of God's grace, but the awareness of it. It's one thing to be the recipient of grace, but it's something much grander to know you are a recipient and revel in it.
When we see, daily, that we live and enjoy all good things by the grace of God, greed and covetousness begin to die and thankfulness arises in its place. When we see, daily, that God has forgiven us all of our sins, and cleanses us from our unrighteousness through the blood of Jesus, pride and a judgmental spirit begin to wither and humility begins to shine. When we see, daily, that the mercy of God continues to overflow in our lives aiding us and healing us amidst temptation, affliction, and the various pressures that seek to conform to the pattern of this world, boasting in self is seen as an ironic embarrassment and boasting in Jesus takes center stage in our hearts.
Grace and mercy not only make one a Christian, but also make the difference in our Christian lives every day.