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Archive for April, 2014

“May God be gracious to us and bless us,

and make His face shine upon us.

that your ways may be known on earth,

your salvation among all nations.”

Psalm 67-1-2

There is a purpose and a reason beyond just ourselves that God shines His face of grace on us.  He desires us to pass along the story of His love and grace (His salvation) to all those around us.  God’s “way” that is to be known on earth is all about grace!  Who in your circle needs to hear about God’s grace today?

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“…The Lord, the Lord,

the compassionate and gracious God,

slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness…”

Exodus 34:6

As you think through the above verse, note how God’s grace is linked with His compassion and patience, His abundance of love, and the quality of  faithfulness.

Consider the ways that the Lord has shown grace to you recently and thank Him.

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Editor’s Note:  This series about grace (God’s favor) invites each of us to look around in the “every day” of  life and see the signs of God’s grace personally.  Sometimes we don’t have to look very hard to see ways His grace is poured out…read below for another story of Grace on Display from one of our writers!

Grace, grace, God’s grace. What do you think of when you think of God’s grace?  First of all, I think of His saving grace in the spiritual sense. The grace that moves me to accept the gift of salvation provided by God’s Son, Jesus Christ.

This morning I am writing about a touch of God’s grace I experienced on Easter morning last week.  Let me first assure you that all is well, but a little before 1 am a call came from our son-in-law saying he was on the way to the hospital with our youngest daughter. He said he met the ambulance about a third of the way to the hospital. Our daughter was in severe anaphylaxis shock and they did not know what had caused this reaction. She had gone to bed early and not feeling well, and she asked her husband to scratch her back as it itched. She woke a little later not feeling well: nausea, hives covering her body, chilled, not thinking clearly, trouble breathing, etc. She went to the living room and hubby asked “What’s the matter”, and by this time her color was also bad. As she worked to process his question and tried to formulate an answer, he immediately realized she was in desperate condition. He called 911 and loaded her in the car. While in the ambulance, they worked on her all the way to the hospital, trying to get her to answer questions and telling her, “stay with us.” Several hours later, with much medicine in her system and more meds to take home, she is doing better. By the next morning, she said she was still not feeling great but much better.

We as parents pray for our kids, we may not pray daily but we do consistently pray and we trust them in the hands of our Great God.   Today we saw God’s hand touch our “Baby Girl”. We are told that Jesus is our Great High Priest and He is seated at the right hand of the Father making intercession for us, Romans 8:34 says this, “Who is he that condemns?  Christ Jesus, who died–more than that, who was raised to life–is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.”   I am here to tell you I am so thankful for that promise, because I believe that Jesus showed us His grace and mercy this Easter in a very personal way and physically saved our daughter.   Thank you, Father, for your grace!

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Do you have a fun weekend ahead of you?  Or are you kind of dreading whatever is ahead of you?  Perhaps your weekend, like mine, looks like it will be a mixed bag of both pleasure and challenge.  And that is why we all need grace!

God’s kind of grace!

Grace that allows us to enjoy our life with gratitude, to overlook hurtful insults, laugh together, cry together, and to reach out and lend a helping hand wherever it is needed.  May the following blessing of grace encourage our hearts:

“Peace …and love with faith from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  Grace to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying love.”

Ephesians 6:23-24

 

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“…he predestined us to be adopted as his son

through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will,

to the praise of His glorious grace,

which he has freely given us in the One He loves.”

Ephesians 1:5,6

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“Grace and peace to you

from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,

who gave himself for our sins

to rescue us from the present evil age,

according to the will of our God and Father…”  

Galatians 1:3-4

 

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I think I take grace for granted, and if not grace, at least my understanding of it.

We met Alan in the Christian bookstore. I was browsing the aisles for a new Bible study book. Meanwhile, my husband waited patiently, lounging comfortably in the few chairs available there. I could hear his voice and that of another man engaged in a discussion about grace. My curiosity got the best of me, and I joined them.

Alan had many questions, but one thing was certain. He was living under the law. His hope was that God would examine his life and determine he was good enough. God would surely notice that he had strictly adhered to the ten commandments, right? And, how or why would God ever allow a repentant criminal into heaven?

We shared with Alan the words of Jesus on the cross, reassuring words to a criminal hanging next to Him who recognized and believed Jesus was the Messiah, “Today you will be with Me in paradise” (Luke 23:43).

Jesus came to offer grace. Adhering to the law, no matter how perfectly we think we do so, is not the way that God made for us. In John 14:6, Jesus declares, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

My heart ached for Alan. When we left that day, I’m not sure that he grasped grace. He was holding quite securely to his good deeds. Driving to our next destination, my husband and I grabbed hands and prayed for Alan, prayed for his salvation, prayed that he would understand the assurance that God’s grace brings.

My gratefulness for grace grew in leaps and bounds that day. The grace that I have embraced through Jesus gives me the assurance that I have a guaranteed eternal home. I don’t have to wonder if God thinks I am good enough. And, I long for others to understand grace and why Christ died.

Ultimately, Grace says, “I love you and I have made a way!” Do you know that way?

“I do not set aside the grace of God,

for if righteousness comes through the law,

then Christ died for nothing.”

~ Galatians 2:21

 

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