Author and pastor Scott Sauls knows what it’s like to be his own worst critic.

“Even if we’re being unfairly critiqued, there’s usually at least a kernel of truth in there somewhere that gets under our skin and bothers us,” Sauls says on this episode of The Russell Moore Show.

Those kernels of truth can lead to guilt and shame. And, as Sauls says, “We have done things that render us guilty.” But we also have a victorious Savior who “accomplished a satisfactory victory” for us.

Sauls and Moore talk about regrets, grace, seasons of suffering, and clinging to the gospel. They discuss the range of the human experience—everything from freedom and joy to guilt, shame, anxiety, and depression—and the God who draws near to us.

Sauls’ new book is called Beautiful People Don't Just Happen: How God Redeems Regret, Hurt, and Fear in the Making of Better Humans.

Sauls and Moore reference “The Catastrophe of Success” by Tennessee Williams, Moore’s recent episode with Arthur Brooks, and “Learning in War-time” by C. S. Lewis.

Quotations mentioned in this episode include:

“People may spend their whole lives climbing the ladder of success only to find, once they reach the top, that the ladder is leaning against the wrong wall.” - Allen Raine, though often attributed to Thomas Merton

“[Envy] consists in seeing things never in themselves, but only in their relations. … If you desire glory, you may envy Napoleon, but Napoleon envied Caesar, Caesar envied Alexander, and Alexander, I daresay, envied Hercules, who never existed.” – Bertrand Russell

“Preach the gospel to yourself.” – concept by Martin Luther, quote by Jerry Bridges

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” – Roy and Jane Nichols in Death: The Final Stage of Growth, compiled by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

“The Russell Moore Show” is a production of Christianity Today
Chief Creative Officer: Erik Petrik
Executive Producer and Host: Russell Moore
Director of Podcasts: Mike Cosper
Production Assistance: CoreMedia
Coordinator: Beth Grabenkort
Producer and Audio Mixing: Kevin Duthu
Associate Producer: Abby Perry
Theme Song: “Dusty Delta Day” by Lennon Hutton