Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Gift of Grace

Every so often, I randomly sit and look through my old journals. Each time I am always reminded of God's faithfulness in my life. I picked up a journal this evening, without knowing the season it was from and was amazed to see all that God has done in the midst of some of the craziest of circumstances. One of the entries I came across as I was reading was actually on today’s date, November 20, years ago. It was a difficult season. Incredibly difficult. Thinking back to that day, I remembered just how horrible I felt. My journals are typically filled with prayers but this one was filled with desperate cries to the Lord. It's interesting though. All these years later, being on the other side of that storm, it’s not the pain that sticks out to me. It’s the grace of God.

This quote, by George Mueller, was included in that journal entry: Prayer is not overcoming God’s reluctance. It is laying hold of God’s willingness.” George Mueller was a man of great faith, a man who knew what it was to run to the Lord with confidence. (His autobiography is filled with powerful testimonies). The Bible tells us that when we approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, we receive mercy and grace in our time of need. The writing in my journal documented great need, but it also documented great grace from a great God. The same God who did the miraculous for George Mueller showed up powerfully for me. He cares for us all just the same. I love the way the Amplified version puts it...

Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God's unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it]. - Hebrews 4:16

Many people have run from God in situations of heartache, loss, frustration, need. And it’s easy to run away. I've been guilty of that. Everything in this world points us away from God. But the grace we need doesn’t come when we run away from God. It comes to us when we run to Him. It floods us. And our Lord has given us the access to approach Him with confidence. He longs to give us the grace we need.

No matter how dark of a situation we find ourselves in, God’s grace is always sufficient. It’s fit to size for whatever we are going through. Sickness, betrayal, fear, weakness, anything. The more we confidently and boldly run to the throne of grace, the more we will receive it. And the more we receive God’s grace, the more we are encouraged to remain true to the Lord. We will then walk freely, living in His grace.

His grace secures us. His grace gives us strength. His grace makes us steadfast. When we're in need of grace, let's not hesitate to run to Jesus and receive it. He is waiting to give us that gift.

And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace [Who imparts all blessing and favor], Who has called you to His [own] eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will Himself complete and make you what you ought to be, establish and ground you securely, and strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the dominion (power, authority, rule) forever and ever. Amen (so be it). - 1 Peter 5:10-11

SO YOU, my son, be strong (strengthened inwardly) in the grace (spiritual blessing) that is [to be found only] in Christ Jesus.


Rob Maulella said...

Thanks for such a well-thought explanation of grace. I agree. I have made so many mistakes and just when I think He could not possibly take me back or forgive another one, He does. I so want to beat myself up. I can give grace to so many others, but not myself. Then I look at my beautiful daughter. I would not withhold grace from her! My heart melts and I begin to see a glimpse of what God sees when He considers me. Thanks for the reminder!! His grace to you. Run in the way of His commands. You (we) are free! Galatians 5:1. We who were once far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ! Ephesians 2. :) Pastor Rob

Jennifer Roth said...

Amen. Thanks for your comment, Pastor Rob. So good to hear from you! I pray you and your family are all doing well. :-)