Jump to content

Christ dwells and delights in you. Yes, YOU! | with James Bryan Smith

The good and beautiful YOU | by James Bryan Smith

Season 8, episode 154
44 min / Published

Stephanie welcomes spiritual director, university professor and author James Bryan Smith to ponder the weight of God's love for us as His chosen creation. In his latest book, "The good and beautiful you" Jim invites us to peel back the layers of many lies we have commonly been fed in the church--about our worthlessness and predicament when our identity is primarily defined as "sinner." Jim likes to remind everyone - inlcuding himself - that Genesis 1 and 2 precede Genesis 3, and that grace and love precede sin and the fall! They discuss the difference between soul and self, and why the soul has such demanding needs. James tells us now the needs of our soul can be met in Christ alone.

Jim describes ten things our soul cannot endure, and ten God-created longings. He says, "the soul is made to soar in trasncendance." Yet this is the furthest thing from self-help and narcissism! He invites us to "put to death our need ot establish our worth through what we accomplish." Who does not need to hear this in our generation of ever-hurried people? 

He talks of the sacredness of our God-bestowed body: "we cannot engage in a relationship with God apart from our bodies." Jim also talks about our deep-seated need to be wanted and desired. He says, "our identity is given by God - and it will find us! We don't have to search for significance; in Christ significance has found us." He prays and invites us to join him in asking the Lord, "O God help me believe the truth about myself, no matter how beautiful." Again, this is the furthest thing from narcissisim because it invites us to then consider every one around us in the same light - considering others as more important than ourselves, imitating Christ Jesus as Paul challenges us in Philippians 2.

Jim says, "I am my own worst critic. I live under the tyranny of the ideal self." Anyone else can use a dose of truth against self-criticism? If God does not spend His days thinking negative thoughts about us, then why should we think those thoughts about ourselves - or others?

Join Stephanie and James Bryan Smith for a profound and uplifting conversation about WHO YOU ARE IN GOD'S EYES.

GOSPELSPICE AND IVPRESS GIFT TO YOU: GET 30% OFF AND FREE SHIPPING FOR "THE GOOD AND BEAUTIFUL YOU" only at ivpress.com by using the discount code SPICE22. This code is valid until July 4, 2022 - 2 weeks after the initial release of this episode. Enjoy this special gift! 

You can also watch the video of this episode on our YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/gospelspice


website: https://jamesbryansmith.com/

the book, The Good and Beautiful You: https://www.ivpress.com/the-good-and-beautiful-you

James Bryan Smith is the author of the Good and Beautiful Series which includes The Good and Beautiful God, The Good and Beautiful You, The Good and Beautiful Life, and The Good and Beautiful Community. He earned his MDiv at Yale and his DMin at Fuller and is a theology professor at Friends University in Wichita, Kansas, where he also serves as the director of the Apprentice Institute for Christian Spiritual Formation.

A founding member of Richard J. Foster's spiritual renewal ministry, Renovaré, Smith is an ordained United Methodist Church minister and has served in various capacities in local churches. He is the editor of A Spiritual Formation Workbook and Devotional Classics (with Richard Foster), and the author of Embracing the Love of God, Rich Mullins: An Arrow Pointing to Heaven, Room of Marvels, The Magnificent Story, and The Magnificent Journey.

Follow him on Twitter: @jamesbryansmith


GOSPELSPICE AND IVPRESS GIFT TO YOU: GET 30% OFF AND FREE SHIPPING FOR "THE GOOD AND BEAUTIFUL YOU" at ivpress.com by using the discount code SPICE22. This code is valid until July 4, 2022 - 2 weeks after the initial release of this episode. Enjoy this special gift! 

The Christian faith is not only about belief and practices, it is also about the kind of people that we become. Yet some of the biggest barriers to our transformation come from our toxic self-narratives. These narratives shape the way we see ourselves and the way we interact in the world. God designed us with a deep longing in our souls to be wanted, loved, alive, and connected to God. Healing our souls requires more than knowing what God thinks about us. Our healing comes not through reason alone, but through revelation.

"The best practice I have seen in Christian spiritual formation" was Dallas Willard's endorsement of the Good and Beautiful series a decade ago. Now this fourth book in the series, The Good and Beautiful You, addresses the self-narratives that hinder spiritual growth and the desires of the soul that only God can satisfy. James Bryan Smith reminds us how Scripture reveals the beauty and goodness of our own souls and how we long for healing that only God can provide. Complete with spiritual practices that help us live into that reality, The Good and Beautiful You will serve as a welcome companion on your journey to discover who you truly are in Christ.

The Good and Beautiful Series includes four essential discipleship books from James Bryan Smith. Work through these proven Bible study resources individually or with a group to learn who God is, what it means to be a Christian, how to live in community, and how to address toxic self-narratives that hinder spiritual growth.

GOSPELSPICE AND IVPRESS GIFT TO YOU: GET 30% OFF AND FREE SHIPPING FOR "THE GOOD AND BEAUTIFUL YOU" at ivpress.com by using the discount code SPICE22. This code is valid until July 4, 2022 - 2 weeks after the initial release of this episode. Enjoy this special gift! 



Delighting in the glory of God. Does this concept strike you as reserved for spiritual contemplatives? What if, instead, it proved the highly practical, deeply foundational perspective you need right now?

Why does God’s glory even matter in our day and age? How can we learn from Jesus to make His glory our true North and lifelong quest? What keeps us from fully stepping into this God-ordained purpose for our life? How do we kindle delight for God on a daily basis? And, once we have embraced God’s glory as our heart’s true delight, how can we then come alongside others?

Join us to cultivate a sincere delight for God’s glory, rooted in an honest, hard look at the depth of our need, and in the much deeper Reality of His grace. Trace the glory of God through Scripture and in your own life. Behold the exact radiance of God’s glory, revealed in Jesus. Learn to see yourself as Christ does—through the lens of the Father’s love at the cross. Jesus offers to overwhelm our deadly self-centeredness with His resurrection power. He carries us every step of the way, even as He calls us to true humility on the path to glory.

Who has time to cultivate the delight that comes from pondering the glory of God? And yet, nothing could be more urgent today. Marthas and Marys, Peters and Johns—we are all invited to dare to dream of a lifestyle of God-centered delight. Nothing could be more practical.

GGOD cover w STR name.jpg


The Gospel Spice Podcast is part of a larger range of tools given to you by Gospel Spice Ministries.

In a nutshell, we exist to inspire Christ-followers to delight in God.

In more details: we provide resources to empower Christian leaders across generational, social, ethnic and geographical boundaries towards more intimacy with Jesus Christ and discipleship effectiveness through a Biblical Christocentric foundation. The Gospel-Spice Ministries provide a safe environment for spiritual and community growth empowering people to know Christ more intimately, serve one another more powerfully, and reach the world for Jesus.

PLAY IT FORWARD by SHARING the link with friends and family.

PRAY IT FORWARD by praying for us and those you share it with!

PAY IT FORWARD!! Would you consider supporting this show today to help others enjoy it for free? It comes to you completely free, but is labor-intensive to produce, and we want to keep putting it in the ears of people!

Gospel Spice Ministries is a non-profit organization registered under the tax-exempt 501c3 status. Your donations are tax-deductible under IRS Section 170. We want to be the best possible stewards of your financial support. All donations above our minimal operating costs go to Christian organizations fighting human trafficking.

(*ListenNotes ranking, 2022)

We invite you to check out the first episode of each of our series, and decide which one you will want to start with. Or, of course, you can start at the beginning with episode 1. 

Season 1: the gospel of Matthew like you've never experienced it

Season 2: Experience Jesus through the Psalms

Season 3: the gospel of Luke, faith in action

Season 4: Proverbs spiced with wisdom

Season 5: Identity in the battle | Ephesians

Season 6: Centering on Christ | The Tabernacle experience

Season 7: Shades of Red | Against human oppression

Season 8: God's glory, our delight | 


Episode ratings
Please log in or sign-up to rate this episode.
Gospel Spice
A podcast by Stéphanie Rousselle
Taste & See | Spice up your delight in God
Episode comments

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

What do you think about this episode? Leave a comment!

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


Important Information

By using this website, you accept the use of cookies in accordance with our Privacy Policy.