We're so glad you've visited our site today! If you have questions, please don't hesitate to ask: firstname.lastname@example.org
God’s Grace: Sustaining Grace, part 1
Three weeks ago we began a series of studies looking into some of the different aspects of God’s Grace. In the first week we looked at God’s Seeking Grace, where we came to realize that God’s Grace seeks us out long before we ever think of seeking Him, while we are still lost in our sin, before we come to faith in Jesus. Furthermore, His Grace continues to seek and to guide us even as we walk in relationship with Him.
The reality is that we’re drawn to Jesus only by God’s Grace, and we are saved through faith in Christ by God’s Saving Grace (as described in Ephesians 2:8 & 9). As we studied God’s Saving Grace” we discovered that salvation is "grace given," "faith accessed" and it is "God glorifying."
Last week we looked into God’s Sanctifying Grace. There we learned that it is our eternal destiny to be like Jesus; and even more than that, it is our earthly duty to become more like Jesus. The bad news is that we cannot accomplish either of these God’s Sanctifying Grace at work in us. (Let me encourage you to go back and read the first three weeks of this series.)
This week, in the last installment of the larger study, we are going to be looking into God’s, Sustaining Grace.
If you watch, read or listen to the news for even a few moments, you will understand very quickly that we live in a painful world. Turn on the news and you’ll hear a long list of stomach churning, tear jerking events, such as the evil we saw on display last year in the Las Vegas shooting or the guy running people over in New York, the shooter in a church in Texas… you get the idea.
Listen to what Job 5:7 tells us: “People are born for trouble as readily as sparks fly up from a fire” NLT. Job says, as surely as hot air rises, life deals us nothing but trouble. And often, we object. How often have you heard it said in a news report, or at a funeral, or when relating sad news about a friend,“No one should have to experience ____________ [insert your pain].” No one should, but the reality is, it happens anyway.
And the truth is, no matter who you are, no matter whether you think, or anyone else thinks, you deserve it: if you live long enough you are going to experience some significantly stressful event like losing a loved one, or getting sick, or someone mistreating you. And the list, unfortunately, goes on and on.
Medication: A Merry Heart
Danny and his wife, Kathy, go to the state fair every year. And every year Danny would say, "Kathy, I'd like to ride in that helicopter."
Kathy always replied, "I know Danny, but that helicopter ride is fifty bucks, And fifty bucks is fifty bucks!"
One year Danny and Kathy went to the fair, and Danny said, "Kathy, I'm 75 years old. If I don't ride that helicopter, I might never get another chance."
To this, Kathy replied, "Danny, that helicopter ride is fifty bucks, and fifty bucks is fifty bucks."
The pilot overheard the couple and said, "Folks, I'll make you a deal. I'll take the both of you for a ride. If you can stay quiet for the entire ride and don't say a word I won't charge you a penny! But if you say one word it's fifty dollars."
Danny and Kathy agreed and up they went. The pilot did all kinds of fancy maneuvers, but not a word was heard. He did his daredevil tricks over and over again, But still not a word.
When they landed, the pilot turned to Danny and said, "By golly, I did everything I could to get you to yell out, but you didn't. I'm impressed!"
Danny replied, "Well, to tell you the truth, I almost said something when Kathy fell out. But you know, Fifty bucks is fifty bucks!"
St Mark’s Community Church, Janesville
Verse of the Week:1 Peter 3:9
Today’s readings: Isaiah 1 – 4