What you have missed and didn’t even know it
by Chris Forder
Ok so, I just made an assumption in the title. I am assuming that many Christians today miss something amazing. I am guessing that many Christians have missed the experience of one of God’s most comforting gifts. What is the gift? It is God’s grace in our lives. I may have lost some people here so let me explain.
I think here at TGS we are great at teaching about God’s grace and we are great at accepting it. But there 3 types of grace. Past, present and future. We have no problems accepting past grace. We know and believe that Jesus died for our sins so that we can be forgiven and reconciled to God. Yes, we have no trouble accepting that we are saved through God’s undeserved gift through Jesus’ death on the cross for us.
We have no problem accepting future grace either. We know and believe that because of Jesus’ death we are guaranteed heaven. We will be accepted not because of our good work but because of Jesus’. I believe many know this, believe this and rejoice in it. But, I don’t think we have a good understanding and therefore we don’t experience God’s present grace in our lives. So, what is present grace? It is hard to capture it in a few sentences (I would really like to preach on this soon).
Maybe I would just say that present grace is accepting that God is not just our judge who declares us innocent, but also our Father who delights in who we are. God loves to walk with you. He loves to pick you up even when you stumble because of sin. He delights in a repentant heart. So, even though we feel the guilt and shame of our failure God loves to forgive in Christ and help us take our next step forward. This means we don’t see God utterly disappointed in us when we fail. Or completely annoyed and angry at us when we sin, becoming our enemy or working against us or even disconnecting himself from us. But, we see him enter into the mess and brokenness of our lives in love and in order to help us become more like Christ. Yes, God delights in seeing us transform. He delights in being a part of our growth. God delights in us as his children.
Accepting this and experiencing this is present grace. Some take this for granted and sin too much. but my guess is that many of us find it hard to see how God loves us in the mess of our own sin. But he does! And God wants a closeness with you throughout it all. Romans 5:20 “But where sin increased, grace increased all the more.”
The grace of God be with you all each day through Christ Jesus. Amen!
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