Tuesday, January 3, 2012

living by grace


Grace is something that few people understand.  Christians talk about it a lot, yet I have experienced many who talk about it and don’t live by it’s truth.

Hear me out for a few minutes on this one.  We are saved by grace, accepted by God, forgiven of our sin and given 2nd chances so many times.  God looks at us and sees His son, Jesus.  Jesus took our place and gave us grace.

The opposite of grace is law.  We are not saved by being good or by what we do.  Salvation comes by the sweet gift of God through Jesus.  That is pure grace.  I’ve heard it defined like this for years: God’s riches at Christ’s expense.  Does that make sense to you?  Sure does to me.

You can tell people who have experienced grace and those who have not.  You can know who lives by grace and who does not.  Often Christians are the worst at judging people.  As God accepted us, we are to accept others.

But let me go in a strange or twisted direction for a minute.  On the flip side the question is this: are we living in a way that people know we are God’s kids?  If so, we will be responding to people with grace.  We will prove we belong to and know God.  How does that happen?  We will act like Jesus acted.  We will hate sin but love people.  Does that characterize your life or mine?

Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God.

That verse might puzzle us for a minute.  It sounds like it says to be a Christian you have to do or prove something.  But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

By living for God and pursing Jesus, we will live differently, we will treat others differently, and we will share grace with the people around us.  Living by grace is a choice.  Treating others with grace is a choice, yet the longer we pursue Jesus the easier and more natural living by grace becomes.

I pray that our lives, our talk and all we do can be said to be … living by grace.

And since it is through God’s kindness, then it is not by their good works. For in that case, God’s grace would not be what it really is—free and undeserved.

Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory.

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