Hebrews 4:15-16 (NLT) This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.
Everyone has bad days. Even strong Christians have moments of becoming overwhelmed, voicing discontentment, lashing out in frustration, stumbling and some even fall. I had that kind of afternoon yesterday. By the end of a day that began with exhaustion, it got the best of me. You ever notice how quickly a bad attitude can go from bad to worse pretty quickly. Well, it did. Thankfully there was no one present to witness my tirade or rant. Ears could not hear me slamming things down and throwing things about. Stepping over the mess of teenagers, walking past the unfolded clothes, seeing the dishes in the sink, and not finding the check in the mail – I was done. So as I carried in the groceries, I voiced my displeasure. I let the Lord know in no uncertain terms exactly how I felt in that moment but rest assured I was not pouring out my heart to the Lord but rather my wrath upon Him. I am a believer. I call myself a Christian. I go to church. I am a leader and Sunday School teacher who faithfully serves and supports ministry of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I share the Word of God in this blog each day. I still need God’s Grace.
As most mornings after such a moment, guilt hung heavy in my heart. I had to get away and talk to my Jesus. Oh, I quickly apologized right after I got things off my chest. I am only human and that irritates me greatly most of the time. Repentance is worthless until one can accept God’s Grace. Such an act is humbling because there is nothing I can do to earn or reciprocate it. I tend to get tangled up in lesser things more than I care to admit. Give me grace, Lord.
Ephesians 2:8-10 (NLT) God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Grace can be defined as “God’s Riches at Christ’s Expense.” Got it! Not really, what does that mean really? Since grace is the basis and foundation of our relationship with God through Jesus Christ, we must learn what grace is to apply it to our life. God saved us by His Grace WHEN you believed. You must believe in the Grace of God to experience salvation. Grace is uncomfortable. It creates a debt that cannot be repaid for those who have trouble receiving it for free. What can I do to earn the grace of God? Absolutely nothing. If I give every second of the rest of my life to serving the Lord, selling all my possessions to give to the poor, traveling from city to city around the world sharing God’s Love, and never ever committing another sin – I still cannot earn or deserve God’s Grace.
This is so difficult for our flesh to accept. Jesus understands every single weakness that I have. He bore the weight of my sin on the Cross so He knows exactly what I am capable of. Jesus knows what it is like to be tempted and tested in this world – yet He never sinned…not once. His Sacrifice allows me to come boldly before His Throne with confidence that His Grace is enough for me especially all the times I fall short of God’s Glory and stumble in life.
Salvation will never be based on anything I can do but completely on who Jesus Christ is and what He gave us. The Gift of Grace is offered to us but will we accept it. God planned to give us all grace, orchestrated it and carried it out on our behalf. Indebtedness is uncomfortable. It challenges our pride for control. We must accept God’s Grace for what it is and live in it all our life to “endure to the end” and be saved. We are all saved the same way. It is the undeserved grace of the Living God. (Acts 15:11)
Romans 3:23-24 (NLT) For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, in his grace, freely makes us right in his sight. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins.
Everyone has sinned. We will all sin again and again no matter how hard we strive not to. Let that sink in for a moment because this startling revelation will change your life forever. Don’t let anyone fool you. No matter how self-righteous they may act or religious they come across they sin just like us. We all fall short of God’s Glorious Standard of Living. I wonder if the Lord allows me to stumble or even fall sometimes to make me aware His Grace that perhaps I have forgotten. Those times when I have allowed pride and self-indulgence to overtake the Truth that His Grace is all I need.
Every good thing from God intended for you can be limited by disobedience, rebellion and sin. Sin is the very thing that keeps us from our inheritance in God. Obedience allows us to live in those blessings. However, when we finally meet Jesus face-to-face is the only time we will truly understand His Glorious Standard of Living which is absolute and complete satisfaction of our soul. In the meantime, we must strive not to sin and live in the Glory of God by His Grace.
2 Corinthians 12:8-10 (NLT) Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
“My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” God’s Power is our strength and power as believers. We cannot ignore God’s Grace and still enter or impact His Kingdom. Grace is the key that unlocks the door to all Heaven has to offer and facilitating it here on earth. If we are not experiencing God’s Power in life – there is a very good chance we must revisit the Cross and accept more of His Grace. Where sin abounds, grace abounded more. I know that when I am struggling His Grace will get me over the hump, but there are many times I must be reminded that it is not about me or what I can do but Jesus Christ who lives in me.
Romans 5:20-21 (NLT) God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were. But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant. So just as sin ruled over all people and brought them to death, now God’s wonderful grace rules instead, giving us right standing with God and resulting in eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
In Ephesians 2:10, it declares us to be a masterpiece that God planned from the start. He created us with a plan and purpose that sin interrupted. Jesus came to renew and restore our life by His Grace. The Word of God was a not a new set of laws or limitations but a mirror to reflect the impact of sin in our life. It tells us what we miss out on when we allow sin to be our master. Every morning I receive new mercy from the Lord because He already knows the tests, temptations and trials that I will face in the day. He wants me to overcome them all by His Grace. I can choose to live the brand new life given to me by the Lord or remain enslaved by sin.
Sin is bondage but God’s Grace is freedom. (Romans 6:14-16) We cannot treat the Grace of God as meaningless and continue in a right relationship with God. Religion adds new mandates to an already complete gospel. (Galatians 2:20-21) Grace gives us the right to choose who we will serve. (Joshua 24:15) True freedom always allows one to choose. You cannot have your cake and eat it to. If you choose sin as the master of your life – it will always lead to death. To choose grace is to choose eternal life. Grace is never an excuse to sin but freedom to serve God and live with Him forever. If we choose to sin, it is willful. Without true repentance, no one can have the grace of God. You cannot serve two masters for you will love the one and hate the other. (Matthew 6:24) Do you love Jesus today? Are you on a mission to eradicate sin from you existence? His Grace is sufficient for you, my friend. It is enough for me, too.
Colossians 1:6 (NLT) This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives, just as it changed your lives from the day you first heard and understood the truth about God’s wonderful grace.
I believe that part of the salvation that the Lord works out in our life is the full assumption of His Grace. It is hard to accept something that is absolutely free but came at such an enormous price. I creates a feeling of indebtedness. I believe many people cannot fully accept God’s Grace because of the responsibility that comes with it. Even if it is not real and perceived by the flesh as a restriction of our freedom, we are not slaves of God but His Children. This is absolute freedom to live apart from sin and have a new life. Don’t let the enemy lie to you by telling you that God’s Grace is just another form of slavery because its not. It is the Gospel. The Good News of unconditional love must be wrapped in His Grace to operate in us. We cannot ignore grace and continue to willfully sin or we have made another choice entirely. The Good News that bears fruit in everyone’s life is that while we were yet sinners – Christ died for us. To accept God’s Grace knowing we can do nothing to earn it and simply to live in it. This is God’s Power and Strength manifesting in our life.
Romans 12:6-8 (NLT) In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.
It’s funny how we overlook the smallest details. In His Grace- God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. I find that when I am not able to see the Fruit of His Spirit or even the spiritual gifts that I am aware of operating in my life that I have somehow strayed from grace. How are God’s Gifts working for you right now? Have you stalled? Stuck in a rut? Not feeling it lately? The warning light is on that maybe, just maybe, His Grace is no longer enough for you. This is when it is imperative that we get to the heart of the matter.
What will you find there? The only foundation worthy of building our life is Jesus. (I Corinthians 3:10-11) It is human nature to put our personal touch on things. Religion likes to add to this foundation with more rules and regulations as if we could make grace any better. Salvation is consummated in my full belief that God’s Grace is ALL that I need to reach the Kingdom of Heaven and life with Him forever. Faith in God requires believing that His Grace is always enough. When we try to “do” things for God, it must be to honor His Gift because we cannot earn it. Any other foundation will crumble and fall.
I need God’s Grace. Lord, give me more grace today. Grace to overcome the sin that quickly overtakes me. Help me to refine the message of my life so that others only see your love and grace – Jesus. Grace is our message. Grace allows us to overlook their sin and shortcomings to hand them God’s Love. Grace seals the way of repentance for the genuine heart. Don’t you love Jesus today? Thank Him, yet again for His Amazing Grace. Look for it in your life today. I encourage you to ask the Lord to give you more grace so that we may be gracious to others sharing the Gospel effectively as it spreads throughout this world.
I Corinthians 15:10 (NLT) But whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out his special favor on me—and not without results. For I have worked harder than any of the other apostles; yet it was not I but God who was working through me by his grace.