Friday, March 8, 2013

Grace oh how sweet.


To be what God wants me to be is the greatest honor I can achieve. Yet it is not my achievement at all it is only by His grace that I am able. (Ephesians 2:8-10).  For by Grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.  I love the old hymn Amazing Grace it is the most humbling set of words put to music.

Amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me, I once was lost but now I am found, was blind but now I see. Some folks sing this song yet cannot get past to first line. They cannot get past the part that says they are a wretch! The hymn writer John Newton (1725-1807) in his deepest dispare of life found forgiveness and mercy. Something he could not do on his own as the song says.

 It was by faith the he cried out and believed and was changed forever more! He was in a place where he realized he was helpless and hopeless. Yet he did not get stranded on the first line. He wrote a song about God's gift of grace through Jesus Christ alone a gift that would change him in only a way God can! A gift of forgiveness, and mercy undeserved yet by God's grace given freely.

I too thought that I could change myself, that I could do better. But it was not until a ship wreck of life hit the I truly understood grace! Grace is used in so many ways and in so many different meanings. A couple that are familiar, God's Riches At Christ's Expense, and unmerited or undeserved favor. Both do pretty much explain grace. But it is not until we live and experience it personally do we truly understand.

It is not until we, by faith alone reach out and grab the hem of Jesus that we truly understand. It is not about feeling good inside and being on an emotional high always. It is the confidence knowing that we truly have an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ. We know this because we do not see ourselves in the mirror of life the same anymore. We see the reflection of Jesus in whose image we have been made.

We are changed! We are different! And we know beyond a shadow of doubt because, what has taken place in our lives could not have been done by us! That is the true experience of grace. Something we can not take credit for or brag about because we have been so humbled. Humbled to the point of almost being speechless. But we do not remain speechless our words come out in expressions of praise and gratitude!

 To be what God wants me to be is the greatest honor I can achieve. Yet it is not my achievement at all it is only by His grace that I am able. (Ephesians 2:8-10).  For by Grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God. 9-not of works, lest any man should boast. 10-For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.