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Anyone else hear the phrase, "I'm better than I deserve"? Or is that just something in the Bible belt states? This statement annoys the bejeebers out of me! So sad how the Christian religion inflicts that all are worthy of hellfire, but that anything better than that (which is everything!) is "better than we deserve". This is something I hear of a LOT! Almost sounds condescending when someone says this. Kind of a rub some god-speak into everyday conversation in hopes of intriguing someone to ask what they mean... And then stick them with the gospel message. I used to think this way, and every conversation was a tad dishonest with the intent to bring others to "the Light". I now can be free to be friendly and sociable without having any other motives.

Biblebeltskeptic 6 Feb 19

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Interesting. Maybe it's just where I'm from (AZ with family from NE and I lived for a while in WA). But I don't remember ever hearing that phrase.
I can definitely see how it would be annoying -- especially if someone thought they were being sincere with it. Ugh. πŸ˜–


The phrase "I'm better than I deserve" doesn't make sense. How can you be better than you deserve?

Maybe it's a bastardization of "I have a better life than I deserve, thanks to jeezus".


I haven't heard that phrase, but I have talked to some Christians who have told me that it doesn't matter what happens in this world because they will receive their reward in heaven. I find that bullshit too.

That ideology makes me furious!


Sounds like something I would say. Just a self-deprecating and playful response to "How are you?"' Itake it to mean that things are going very well for me!

I like that response. I'd probably add the word 'doing' for clarity's sake.

Q: 'How are you?'
A: 'I'm doing better than I deserve.'

I have a friend who uses that term and I've always taken it as a self-deprecating gesture.
This guy is not overtly religious, originally from Michigan and was in the Air Force. In his current business he's also an under-promise and over-deliver kind of guy


I'm a Bible Belt resident and in over 15 years of my coming and going from this godforsaken state, I've never heard that. And I'm in the heart of Fundie-thumpervillle.

There are so many End Timers here that I sometimes wonder if I'm the only person without a bunker and a pantry with 2 years worth of Ramen on hand.

But, nope ... never heard one person day they're getting better than they deserve. I'm finally hearing them say Trump wasn't exactly honest about jobs in manufacturing for the area, so I assume there may be hope for a few of these people after all.

(PS: "bejeebers"? No offense, but it's OK to say "shit" or something else less Midwestern-Christiany. That word, I happen to hear aaaaaallllllllllllll the time. It's so blasphemy-safe. Just sayin'.) πŸ™‚


The phrase is a rationalization intended to make one feel good when things go badly or when a person buys into the 'I'm a sinner' & only by god's grace am I saved. Boohoohoo!


I've heard
"It's better than I deserve"
He/she is no better than they aught to be"
or even
"I deserve better"

but not this


Sorry, I have never heard this phrase, and to me it makes no sense whatsoever..I have heard similar but sensible phrases like ""dating above my pay grade".


Is it about undervaluation?

I think it is.


Mainly bible belt, lot of delusional thinking there

bobwjr Level 10 Feb 19, 2020

I live on the Left Coast, but travel around the country a lot, and have never heard this. It wouldn’t even make sense to me if I hadn’t read your post and some of the comments. My first reaction to it is: β€œdeserve” according to whom? The gods? Society? Mom? Strikes me less as self-deprecating and more as β€œself-disempowering,” which is something too many religions encourage.


I'd guess that it is a teaser used by evilangelicals. If anyone should question it, they can segue into a discussion of your beliefs. They can then invite you into their church, or see if you are 'other'. Presumably it is based on the Christian notion of humans being sinful from the Fall of Adam. Coming from the evilangelicals, it then translated into colloquial parlance.


I never heard that phrase and -definitely- don’t subscribe it. As a former European Catholic, I was never imbued the sense of guilt Catholics seem to have in the US.


I hear it all the time.
I believe it's meant to be self-deprecating.
At least those from whom I hear it most are decent people, who aren't trying to be anything but affable.
It is, however, another one of those "Southernisms".

Yes, it's definitely self-deprecating.


I, too, find it annoying.


Any particular reason you determined that it had to have some religious significance?

I have a friend who uses that term and I've always taken it as just a self-deprecating gesture.
This guy is not overtly religious, originally from Michigan and was in the Air Force. In his current business he's also an under-promise and over-deliver kind of guy.

lerlo Level 8 Feb 19, 2020

That phrase seemed to start in the church I attended here in SC, and my religious co-workers use it. So I hear all the time from deeply religious friends and family that we "deserve to burn in hell".

@Biblebeltskeptic well since there is no hell you're safe 😁


It's some odd Yin & Yang.
On the one hand, they are religious and serve with many good deeds.
OTOH...the EGOS are massive !!

twill Level 7 Feb 19, 2020

If everything is "better than you deserve" it is because bible believers know you are just a miserable sinner worthy of hellfire. I've heard the phrase and it is the kind of crap that a cult would use. It is also used by many Evangelicals.


I think religion convinces the wrong people to say it. Some SOBs are better off than they deserve to be.


No..can’t say I’ve ever heard that expression, I’m pleased to say. Maybe hasn’t reached these shores yet.


This statement was made to me by two different people in the same day!


The Christian god is an abusive parent. The Alpha, the Omega, Omnipotent and Omniscient, yet somehow unable or unwilling to prevent horrors that befall his creations and gets pissed off enough to destroy the world when they exercise the 'free will' that he supposedly gave them. All good things you get, no matter how hard you worked to get them, come from God. All bad things, no matter how undeserved, are your own fault. No wonder they seem to be disconnected from reality.


I never once heard that phrase in the Christian faith in which I was brought up. In fact, quite the opposite. We (humanity) are sinful and not worthy of anything. Only through the grace of Christ may we become worthy to join Him in eternity. Humanity is depraved and is continually declining due to sin and the increasing surrender to the influences of Satan. In such a condition, according to Christian orthodoxy, how could we possibly be "better than we deserve?" Not that I believe a word of it, but that is what I was taught.

I guess, if we are sinners deserving of hellfire, than anything other than that would be better.


Yes I heard that phrase from my mom's mouth but NO for religious reasons. When I was in my twenties my mom said ,if a married man or a womanizer tries to sweeten
your ears walk away from them. You deserve better than that.


I grew up in Los Angeles, and lately lived in the Portland/Vancouver are and have never heard that line before. I may be a regional thing.


That saved a ""wretch"" like me????
We sing that from birth with no idea wtf it means

It's assumed that we all deserve to burn in hell.

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