|Posted by Shannon Biggs-Ross on March 14, 2012 at 9:40 AM|
I'm speaking to you out of deep gratitude for all that God has given me, and especially as I have responsibilities in relation to you. Living then, as every one of you does, in pure grace, it's important that you not misinterpret yourselves as people who are bringing this goodness to God. No, God brings it all to you. The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what he does for us, not by what we are and what we do for him. Romans 12:3 (The Message Bible)
There are times in my life when I feel completely defeated ... I'm sure we can all relate to that feeling. Whether we're praying for an answer and the answer never comes ... or when we're going through a rough season in life and every door seems to close in our face ... or when a loved one is hurting and there's absolutely nothing we can do about it ...
I begin to take my eyes off of God and put them on me ... The "if only's" begin ... If only I gave more of my money to further God's Kingdom, if I prayed more, if I volunteered more, if I was a better mother/wife/friend ... if I sinned less ... if ... if ... if ... If only - then I'd be good ... good enough and God would hear me ... If only - then I could offer God something ... He'd love me more ... He'd bless me more ... He'd rescue my loved one from sickness, depression, addiction, financial burdens, life's trials ...
As I go with God, I grow with God. His Word brings healing and hope and truth. It's reminds me to take my eyes off "me" and put them back where they belong, on Him. Romans 12:3 makes it very clear - we do not bring anything to God - what's good in us is only because He makes us good. We live in His PURE grace. Regardless if we could give every inch of our time/money/resources - we can never be good enough. You can't "work" your way good - His grace and only His grace makes us good. If it was any other way we wouldn't need Him ... We'd be boastful, self-reliant, arrogant -
Ephesians 2:8-10 brings it all home - For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
Friend, if you find yourself feeling like this today - spend some time with God - in His Word, in prayer - don't wear yourself weary trying to work your way good - We don't reach up to Him, we reach out and He reaches down to us. Friend, He loves you.
Abba Father, please forgive me for my selfish attitude, when I put my eyes on me instead of You. When I try to do this life by relying on my strength instead of Your's. Thank you for Your pure grace ... Thank you for saving me. I love you. In Jesus' name. Amen.