Actually, just the opposite should be taking place. The apostle Paul, as he examined his own heart, wrote: For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing....Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? (Romans 7:18,19, 24 ESV)
Jonathan Edwards, the great pastor and theologian of the Great Awakening of the 18th Century, had the same honest, humble view. He wrote: “When I look into my heart, and take a view of my wickedness, it looks like an abyss infinitely deeper than hell.” Edwards referred to his own indwelling sin as “Infinite upon infinite!”
It is obvious that when we come to Christ, we are broken and laid low through the conviction of the Holy Spirit. He shows us the sin that has separated us from and offended God, the Holy One. We mourn over our spiritually bankrupt condition and in meekness, begin for the very first time in our lives to hunger and thirst after righteousness. This is God's work of grace in our lives.
However, after 10, 20 or even 50 years of new life in Christ, our situation, apart from Christ, remains the same. We are still totally dependent on Christ's righteousness to clothe us, and His grace is still absolutely able to convert and keep the soul who by faith has turned to Jesus Christ. There are no jump starts from God that get us going and then we take it from there. No, it is all about Jesus and His grace.
Sound theology led Edwards into total, life-long dependence on God’s grace. He stated: “I have a much greater sense of my universal, exceeding dependence on God’s grace and strength, and mere good pleasure, of late, than I used formerly to have; and have experienced more of an abhorrence of my own righteousness. The very thought of any joy arising in me, on any consideration of my own amiableness, performances, or experiences, or any goodness of heart or life, is nauseous and detestable to me. And yet I am greatly afflicted with a proud and self-righteous spirit, much more sensibly than I used to be formerly. I see that serpent rising and putting forth its head continually, everywhere, all around me. Though it seems to me, that, in some respects, I was a far better Christian, for two or three years after my first conversion, than I am now; and lived in a more constant delight and pleasure; yet, of late years, I have had a more full and constant sense of the absolute sovereignty of God, and a delight in that sovereignty; and have had more of a sense of the glory of Christ, as a Mediator revealed in the gospel.”
So as we grow up in Christ, it's not ourselves that we take great delight in, but instead it is Jesus Christ who has loved us, saved us, and mediates on our behalf. His glory rises and our pseudo-glory (which is really our poverty and shame) just fades away ... as it should.