Tuesday, November 25, 2014
The Grace of God Through Us
God’s grace is always with us, along with Satan’s attempts to appeal to our pride to bring us back to our own independence. This is especially so in our inter-personal relationships.
For example, many people of diverse political, moral, spiritual, emotional, and mental convictions will find themselves in confined quarters this Thursday for the annual celebration of the Thanksgiving meal. As is true whenever folks gather, each person will bring a presence into the room: a jolly person lightheartedness; a negative person a pall of depression. Some people fill a room with tension; others instant calm and security.
We as Christians can choose to either bring God’s grace into a room or our own independence. In the latter case, we drag in whatever mood or attitude we are currently indulging in: nastiness, haughtiness, remoteness, superiority, intellectualism, self-promotion, self-justification, self-protection, syncretism (trying to look like or please the people we are surrounded by), superficial compassion, drama or an internal critical spirit. Our mood, along with the mood of an entire room, can change depending on who enters or leaves.
But when God’s grace is brought into the room: His warmth, wisdom, strength, silence, calm, patience, confidence, love, and discernment--others will notice. They will feel a presence like never before unless they’ve previously been around other true disciples. And when people continue to perceive this same remarkable and positively peculiar presence around Christians, they will begin to understand that it is Christ who they are seeing in Christians, not the person in whom Christ lives.
As Christians, the last person people need to see is us. The first, and finally only, person they need to see is Christ. This requires God’s grace flowing through us to bring Christ into a room. We do this out of love for and obedience to the One who showed forth Christ to us through others and now instructs us to let Him do the same for others through us.
“However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace.” Acts 20:24
“For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” 1 Corinthians 2:2