Hello everyone. 🙂
In this blog post, I am talking about a topic that is always relevant to life: how to accept and benefit from God’s grace. I am writing as one who is on this journey along with everyone else who is on it. I am finding that grace is an absolute necessity. A Christian walk without God’s grace=failure.
I have discovered, from the Bible as well as from personal experience, that the grace of Christ is a necessity and not an option. This blog post, which I wrote a while back, explains the reality that we have no hope of salvation apart from the hope that we have as a result of accepting Jesus’ sacrifice for us on the cross. Not only can we not pay the price for our sins, but we also do not have the strength in and of ourselves to resist sin. I have found, from experience, that trying to fight against sin on my own is a very depressing experience. Resolutions are made and then broken… repeatedly. Why is this? It is because the focus is still on myself rather than on Jesus, who alone can save us as we surrender to and cooperate with Him.
For example: let’s think about a fictitious story in which someone struggles with overeating. The person says to himself or herself, “I know that overeating is wrong, and I am going to stop doing it. Why have I been doing this? I know it’s wrong. It’s so hard to stop, but I’m going to”. This is his or her thought process every day. However, the person focuses on his or her problem all the time, and accidentally reinforces the problem instead of overcoming it, because he or she is always thinking about it.
If, instead, the person were to say; “I know that overeating is wrong, and I am going to stop doing it by God’s grace and through His strength. Lord, please give me strength and help me to turn my mind to other, truly helpful things when I’m tempted to overeat,” then he or she would be on the path to victory. There would still be struggles, and there might even be falls, but the person would ask for and believe in God’s forgiveness when he or she fell, his or her focus would be on God’s grace and empowerment to do right, and he or she would ask God for His strength. Victory would come to this person.
In my life, I have seen time and time again that preoccupations with myself have never benefitted me and that they have only kept me down. I am once again owning the past victories I have had with Jesus, and I will not, by God’s grace and through His strength, throw them away as false and worthless. When I remember how God has time after time given me His merciful grace, meeting me where I have been, offering me forgiveness from sin and empowerment to live for Him, when I see how He has done things in and through me that I could not have done on my own, I am encouraged. I experience a renewed sense of comfort as I reflect on God’s loving heart, and on His goodwill toward me. I am encouraged that He can and will help me to gain more victories.
Additionally, some time back, God taught me the beautiful message of Isaiah 58. The application of this message created a beautiful change in my life. I have not consistently followed this message, but I am getting back up on the horse by God’s grace, and am choosing to live out this message as God continues to change and transform me. I can see that this is a big part of where God wants us to be putting our focus as we accept God’s grace in our lives and overcome our sins through His strength. I recommend that you all take the time, when you get the chance, to read my testimony on what God did for me as I practiced the message of Isaiah 58.
Note: I have copied and pasted the text for this blog-post (on my experience with Isaiah 58) multiple times and have been unsuccessful in fixing the bad formatting. I apologize ahead of time for the bad formatting in this blog post.
Blessings and courage to all. 🙂