God’s Grace

grace

Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began. 2 Timothy 1:9

Grace. It has become one of the words we sing about. We use the phrase as a part of our “Christianese.” But has it become just a word that we casually and haphazardly use without grasping its immensity or the depths of its richness in our lives? Welcome to this new week of Freedom Fighters. I am thankful today that you are part of our family. God’s family. A family blessed by and with the grace of God.

I recently read this powerful devotional that hones in on some of the richness of this word grace:

Salvation: You are saved by grace. The forgiveness of your sins, your justification before God, your redemption from the slavery of sin, your deliverance from evil, and your future home in heaven are yours today because of grace.

Sufficiency: Grace enables you to do all God calls you to do today. Success is not based today upon what you can accomplish, but upon what He will do through you. Grace is not about your strength, but about His mighty power working in you, even in the time of your greatest weakness.

Edification: Grace builds you up, lifts you up, and keeps you standing. Grace is heard in the sound of God’s voice speaking over and over into your ear, “I am for you today. I am with you today. I am the source of everything good, everything lovely, everything holy, and everything mighty.”

Hope: Grace assures you of a glorious future and an overwhelming inheritance that is yours in Jesus Christ. Grace leads you on, cheers you on, and moves you on into all that is in God’s heart for you.

Victory: Grace brings to you all that is yours in Christ. You are victorious today because Jesus is the triumphant One. You are more than a conqueror because He has conquered all. You are above all things because all things are under His feet. You reign in life because He reigns—King of kings and Lord of lords.

Abundance: Where sin once abounded, grace abounds even more. Where darkness ruled, grace overruled. Where death held you in cruel bondage, grace brought you into a glorious new freedom. Grace is never poured out to you like raindrops, but like a cascading waterfall.

Purity: Grace is the doorway into the beauty of God’s holiness. Grace is never a license to sin, a freedom to sin, or a cloak for sin. Grace brings us into a life that is greater than what sin could ever offer us. Grace extends the hand that lifts us out of the miry clay, throws the rope that pulls us from the deepest pit, and lights the flame that brings us out of the darkest cave.

Gifting: Gifts that come to you from God are grace gifts. His grace gifts to you will be different than the grace gifts He gives to others. Grace does not play favorites. The gifts that have been given to you from God are the perfect gifts that are needed for you to fulfill His will and His calling in your life. From Today is Your Best Day – Roy Lessin

This ought to leave us speechless! It should cause your heart to soar. It should bring tears to your eyes, and maybe make you fall to your knees in praise and adoration. God’s amazing grace! I trust that this reminder encouraged you today. Don’t take for granted the amazing grace of God.

Rejoice! Pray! Give thanks!

Written by Dr. Bill Welte, President/CEO of America’s Keswick: He has been married to his child sweetheart for 40+ years, and has three married kids, one that is engaged, and 10 amazing grand kids. He loves music and is an avid reader.

The Daily Bible Reading: Gen 24-27 | You can download our 2017 Daily Bible Reading Plan by clicking here

screen-shot-2017-01-01-at-8-38-30-pm

Daily Quote: God enables you to do all that God calls you to do today. – Roy Lessin

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:

My lips shall greatly rejoice when I sing to You, And my soul, which You have redeemed. Psalm 71:23

Maintain A Joyful Attitude

teenage boy under rain in the city

“Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” ~Philippians 1:4-6 (NLT)

Attitude. When we say the word “attitude” among folks today there seems to be something uncomfy about it. I guess it’s because we are waiting for a negative adjective to be attached to it. To say one has a bad attitude seems the norm today and then to say that at all seems to be the only time we bring someone’s attitude. Maybe it’s not like this in your circles of life but in mine it is an everyday thing to overhear. A worker that doesn’t do a particular task (because they weren’t hired to do this task) displays their attitude as anti-team and therefore they maintain a bad attitude towards the job.

I think if there was anyone in Scripture who could’ve had and maintained a bad attitude it would have been the apostle Paul. Well I think he had one when he was a “Pharisee of Pharisees” but Jesus Christ changed that attitude over to one that found joy in affliction. In 2 Corinthians 11:24-28 we get a long list of things that Paul endured during his missionary travels. One time with getting 39 lashes is enough to send me into a “This ain’t happenin’ no more” attitude but Paul was different because Jesus made it different for him.

There was something Paul understood and that he had to have an attitude of joy. None the matter of people, possessions or circumstances when your confidence is in God joy is the resulting attitude. It didn’t matter the difficulty of the paths he walked or how much of beating he took walking those paths, Paul’s choice he to put his confidence in God. As Chuck Swindoll wrote in “Laugh Again”, Paul’s confidence in God guided him like an inner compass, always keeping him on joy’s course regardless of the gales that blew.”

So here in lies this question: Do you have that same inner confidence in God guiding you? If you think not, then maybe we should examine this confidence of Paul’s…

Paul’s time Philippi church planting didn’t go wasted. Because they were consistent, alive and actively participating in the Gospel on our their own. He states that quite clear in his opening lines of his letter to them. It’s in verse 6 that you can feel the firm confidence that Paul has that: “For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” and it’s in this that three reasons of Paul’s confidence appear. That God was at work, in control and His plan for His glory was being followed in the Philippian church.

The thing that kept all of this influx is having a “keen discernment.” The church went Gods way because the people of God of choose to go God’s way. For any church to be able to grow in the grace of God is having God’s people, individually make the conscience effort to have a full and complete knowledge of truth on one side and a keen sense of right and wrong on the other. And I believe this comes from people who choose to maintain a joyful attitude by placing their confidence in God.

As a contributor to these Freedom Fighter blogs you gotta be asking…Do I do this myself? My answer to that goes like this…He who BEGAN a good work in me WILL PERFECT it until the day He comes back or chooses to take me home. I have confidence in this because it is a promise of God. Do I express this joy and confidence at all things at all times? Well I need to that better but I am pretty sure I’m alone in this either (not that this excuses me for my falling short).

To finish up for today let me borrow from Chuck Swindoll and say there are three principles we need to glean before we set sail into our day. First, confidence brings joy when you focus on the things for which you’re thankful. Second, confidence brings joy when you let God be God. Third, confidence brings joy when you keep love within proper limits. Giving thanks to our God is becoming a lost art. Today lets band together to regain our joy in the LORD by giving Him thanks in all things…even if His answer to somethings are “NO”. Amen?

Written by Chris Hughes: Chris, a graduate of The Colony of Mercy (11-2003) is married with two adult children (you may remember them from summer staff) and serves on the Deacon Board at Trinity Alliance Church in Cologne NJ.

The Daily Bible Reading: Psalm 123; Proverbs 5

Daily Quote: “It’s easy to understand why the world doesn’t see much joy reflected in Christianity today. We’ve quit practicing the art of thanksgiving, and without it, joy will remain a very scarce commodity.” ~Charles Swindoll

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:

This poor man cried out, and the Lord heard him,
And saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him,
And delivers them. ~Psalm 34:6-7

More Writing From Chris Hughes: