Monday, July 1, 2013

Grace Enough

"Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in time we will reap if we do not grow weary." Galatians 6:9

No matter how much you love others, the fact that you are human means you will have times when you get discouraged over the actions/words/inaction of others. We beat ourselves up over the disappointment it but it’s inevitable. However, the more we search the scriptures for a more appropriate worldview, these times will occur less frequently and less severe. Life is a process.
People are going to disappoint us. We live in a world where everything and everyone is broken because of sin. Now I know that according to many people, the word “sin” is a curse word. It isn’t preached in many churches and many Christians don’t want to use it for fear of being thought judgmental and therefore, face persecution. But you can’t explain life or people at all without taking about the foundation of which it all started.

The thing about sin is this: We are all infected. Once we  1. See the nature of our own hearts, 2. See what’s been done for us to atone for it and 3. Begin a relationship with the One who can change us, we can begin to offer grace to other sinners like ourselves. We Christians are thought to quite the hypocritical bunch by non-believers, and many times we are. We tend to forget who we are, and what has been given to us. 

But here’s the thing -- being changed is a process that never ends prior to our exit from this world. We need lots of grace just to make it through a day, and even when we don't feel like we have what we need - we do. If we need grace so frequently, why would we think a non-believer wouldn't need it? Everyone needs it - no matter how spiritually mature they are. And it’s so critical for us to show others how precious God’s love is by offering grace to them.
Grace, according to Miriam Webster , is:
  • is unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification.
  • a special favor.
  • disposition to or an act or instance of kindness, courtesy, or clemency.
  • a temporary exemption.
  • the quality or state of being considerate or thoughtful.

If you want people to see God, show them His love by showing grace. He has given the power to do so to those who believe in Him. Ultimately, it doesn't really matter that we don’t get what we want when eternity is at stake. It doesn't encourage anyone to follow Christ when we put our own expectations and feelings above showing them the very love God never deprives us of.
No matter what religion you practice, I’m sure you can agree that we learn by making some mistakes and seeing some real ugliness in ourselves (the need for change). That’s why Jesus said we must remain connected to the vine. You can’t see your true heart the way God sees it, much less change yourself without the mercy and power of the Lord. You can read and puff yourself up with knowledge all day long but it will never compare to the power of the Holy Spirit – never.

"But knowledge puffs up while love builds up." 1 Corinthians 8:1

The point I’m trying to make it this: give yourself and others a little bit of room. You are going to fail them they will fail you. The grace God has given you IS enough. He also commands you to show others just how He has empowered you by offering grace to others. And once you start practicing grace, you’ll start to see miracles happen in your life and in your relationships.

Fight the good fight, finish the race.

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