“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” –Matthew 5:6 (NIV)

I generally avoid calling myself a Christian, or giving myself any particular religious label. I’ve always done this in order to avoid attracting whatever stereotype the person I’m chatting with might have in their head about what I claim to be.

I’m not a perfect person, but I’d prefer that my flaws are viewed without the lens of a label that I’ve attached to myself. Can I improve myself? Sure, but let’s drop the false pretense that all I need to do is convert to ‘X’ faith and then my problems will be solved.

Jesus taught his disciples to beware the leaven of the Sadducees and the Pharisees. Simply interpreted, he cautioned against becoming part of any religious elite comprised of people who get their sense of self-worth by acting more pious than those outside of their faith.

I eschew labels because this is an easy trap for human beings to fall into. Faith requires vigilance. I strive to be a better person, to increase my faith, and hope to do so for the rest of my days. The danger of regular church attendance is that the routine will lure you into a false sense of accomplishment. As soon as you feel you have risen as far as you need to rise within your own sense of faith, it is in that very place that your faith starts to erode.