Monday, November 16, 2015

THE ALPHA

Grace-the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings. Can I get an Amen and we will close today's discourse.  There is nothing I could possibly add!  

The alpha and omega of what I am thankful for--GRACE.




And yet--this gift--can fly in our face.  We think we need to earn it--deserve it---by our good character and great works.  I love the words in the communion ritual used in the Methodist Church and they have stuck with me all these years---


"I am not worthy to gather up the crumbs under thy table."


We allow the dog to eat the crumbs under our table---but we are not worthy enough to eat the leavings on the floor at the table The Lord has prepared.  In other words--we are lower than the dogs sniffing around for scrapes.  OH--YEAH--smacks me where it hurts.



After all I write a check every month and I volunteer my time and I treat people with love and respect and I read The Word and I seek Christian fellowship.  I looked up the rules and I am trying to follow them all.  YIKES--it is impossible---I REALLY come up short when it comes to dotting all those i's and crossing all those t's.

God has given me the greatest gift and I thump my nose and remind Him of all I HAVE DONE!  I could never do enough--could never follow enough rules--there is nothing I can do to deserve what He has freely given me.  

SO---Alpha---I am thankful for His grace.  Which He gave knowing I would still whine and complain and bemoan all the other things I want--think I need---am sure I deserve.  He supplied the key to eternity and the map to the door and I am complaining about hiking the path to get there.

AH--and then there is His Grace--

23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 
Romans 3:23-24



6 comments:

  1. This post is wonderful, Lulu. Thank you. You are of course right. There is NOTHING we can do which will earn us a place in God's favour and in Paradise. He has already offered us that place by His Grace and Christ's sacrifice. No continuous prayers, litanies, lit candles, flowers or good works will result in a passport to enter Heaven. But it is important that we do thse things. We pray and light candles or whatever out of reverence, respect and love. (Just like giving a pretty lady flowers and chocolates)

    However : "My brothers and sisters, what good is it for people to say that they have faith if their actions do not prove it? Can that faith save them? Suppose there are brothers or sisters who need clothes and don't have enough to eat. What good is there in your saying to them, “God bless you! Keep warm and eat well!” — if you don't give them the necessities of life? So it is with faith: if it is alone and includes no actions, then it is dead." James 2:14-17. What James is saying here is that having Faith alone is not enough. We should live that Faith through good deeds. Not to enter Heaven; but to live the Commandment of loving one another.

    Father Francis Maple, (a priest I know of whom I have written often), in one of his sermons makes a good point about our relationship with God by referring to a leaning tree. Here's what he says:

    I think of a life as a tree. If a tree leans in one direction when it dies it will fall in that direction. It is not going to fall in the opposite direction. So, too, with our lives. If all the time we are leaning towards God, very likely, with God's grace we shall fall into His arms when we die. But if our lives never point to God, it is very likely that when we die we shall die in enmity with God.

    God bless you my friend.

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    1. Great comment, Friend. I have nothing more to add--you said it all and said it well!
      Blessings, Friend!

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  2. Hi Lulu! How I love the passage you wrote about God sharing the 'key to eternity and the map to the door'. LOVE that! And how could I get even close without grace? It is the gas in my soul's car, and gets me moving into His presence, and doing the things He needs me to do.
    Amazing grace. I wouldn't be able to come to His dinner without it.
    Hugs,
    Ceil

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    1. Amen, Ceil! And yet--there are some days I have a difficult time getting the car out of the garage! Thank the Lord, for GRACE!
      Blessings, Friend!

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  3. It is pretty humbling to realize we can't earn God's love or grace or salvation. HE gives it as a 'free gift', no strings attached. It's so disheartening to watch religions tack on "yeah, but, we should / have to ..." to HIS perfect gift.
    Hope your day is blessed. ~:)

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    1. I believe our works come out of a sense of gratitude--not in hope to earn salvation! What a glorious gift!
      Blessings, Friend!

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Your comments keep my writing and often cause me to think. A written form of a hug or a pat on the back and an occasional slap into reality---I treasure them all!