Have you ever felt you did something so bad – no one can forgive you? How about a gift you didn’t deserve ?
Truthfully, I can go a day without talking to Jesus or even pray. I am sure some people would feel guilty. I do – I feel the conviction. I feel like sometimes I am not worth all the blessings God gives me – or even I take granted for the smallest gift in front of me.
I never actually understood what grace meant in my life. I was raised to say grace before dinner. I just thought it was a way my mom wanted for a few minutes of quiet time before we ate everything up except the dinner table.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.- Ephesians 4:9
This is going to be a short devotional today. I am studying Ephesians at my church. For the last 4 weeks, we have been deeply reading into the chapter. I come to realize how much of a mess up I am. I do not have the heart of Christ sometimes. Having a relationship with Christ does not mean you have a set of rules you need to follow. We need to have our hearts turn to what Christ would be like.
25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26 “In your anger do not sin”[a]: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold. 28 Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.
29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.New International Version (NIV)
I want to transform – to change – in this world it can be so difficult. It is easy to talk slander ( social media made this easy) Have foul language ( my husband is a truck driver – talk about filthy mouth) Go to bed angry ( how dare he didn’t notice my vacuum lines in the carpet I spent 30 minutes doing) Being unselfish ( not helping that old person struggle in the parking lot with groceries). I think our list can go on and on.
This chapter is very humbling. After all that we have done – God has not changed His love for us. We can never grasp or understand the Love He has for us. And, we will never in our lifetime.
Through all our mess ups – we have the gift of grace. All we have to do is pray for God to thank him for His continuing every lasting love. Sometimes we need to step back – look inside our hearts and feel God’s presences – letting us change our hearts. We need to understand the wonder meaning of grace. We messed up, Lord, but you give me love I do not understand – but I give you all my heart before you to clean – to make me more like the person you want me to be.
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4.