I once had an interesting experience at a Fair in Utah. It was an interaction with some volunteer Christians trying to promote an important interpretation of the atonement. They were offering a dollar to take a survey asking whether you are a good person followed by specific questions about one’s practices in regards to commandments.
I could definitely quibble with their approach and with particular points which were brought up as I talked with them, but I think that they were definitely right to complicate a certain perspective where we can sometimes believe or at least feel as if we earn the atonement or even the love of God.
Sister Okazaki has also complicated and perhaps even dispelled this idea as well when she said “Don’t, for mercy’s sake, believe that Jesus loves you because you’re so lovable. He loves you because he’s so loving! You can’t buy his love, beg his love, borrow his love, blackmail his love, steal his love, or bargain for his love. You already have it: measured out, pressed down, shaken together, and running over.”
-Chieko Okazaki, Being Enough, p. 64