Tag Archives: grace

How Long Will We Forget His Might? (Reflection for 9/16)

“He has cut down in fierce anger
all the might of Israel,
He has withdrawn from them his right hand
in the face of the enemy; 
He has burned like a flaming fire in Jacob, 
consuming all around”

-Lamentations 2:3

ROTD: We must not forget to fear the Lord.

Why?

Another prevailing attitude of the day, among Christians and non alike, is a lack of the fear of the Lord. Going along with our lack of forethought of the consequence of our sin, it appears as though we have set out to deny that God is a God to be feared. We overemphasize His love, mercy, grace, tenderness, forgiveness (ALL of which are good things) but we forget that God is equally a God of wrath, of justice, of righteousness, of holiness, of perfection. This deserves and demands our respect, reverence, and fear.
But what does it mean to fear the Lord?
The best way I have heard it explained is in Eshon Burgundy’s song, “The Fear of The Lord“. He says, pretty simply, that

“To fear the Lord is to stand in awe of the reality of God”

So this means that we don’t necessarily go around quaking, wondering if our next wrong step will earn us a lightning bolt from the Man Upstairs. It means that we recognize and are humbled by the sheer magnitude of who God is.
Have you ever just taken a moment to consider God? Who He is? What He is capable of?
That’s why it is a good thing to fear the Lord. If we make God into someone who is not to be feared, what reason at all have we to listen? If I am more powerful than the God I serve, who does that serve better-God, or me?

When we begin to look at just who God is, what He can do, and compare that to who we are, and what we have done, it should send a little shiver down our spine. It should humble us, as we look at the reality of God and His majesty. Reading these verses in Lamentations, and throughout the Old Testament, God isn’t just some mean old God who kills people, as some would seem to believe. God is perfect, and holy, and sin is simply unacceptable.  This is what the response is to disobedience, and He told them it would be so. Does not a father discipline His child? How much more so, the perfect God of the universe?

Every other religion in the world is man reaching out-either to God, or just self-enlightenment, or to just living-everything else is us trying to do it on our own. God says, “This is what Christianity looks like as a religion”. It’s an impossible task, and we would inevitably fall to our own destruction trying to reach out to God.  So He made a way for us. Thanks be to God that His power is on display in His pursuit of us, and that when we recognize just how mighty our God is, we see that in all of His omnipotence He DESIRES to be with us. He wants us to be with Him, and He has made a way for us to do so through the death of His Son on the cross.

Prayer:

Lord, we recognize that You are holy. You are perfect, and deserving of all the praise and honor and glory. Help me to recognize the reality that is You. Help me to stand in awe of you, help me to fear you properly. Lord, we thank you that we don’t have to strive to try and reach you, but instead while we were yet sinners and rebellious You sent Your Son to make a way for us to join You. Help us to have a reverence and fear of you all of our days, and give us the joy and peace that come in knowing Christ and being known by Him.
In Jesus’ Name,
Amen.

P.S. to find more works by Eshon Burgundy, here is the album in full: http://www.humblebeast.com/the-fear-of-god/. Eshon and other hip-hop artists write God-inspired, deep works through the label HumbleBeast. God bless!

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More Than Enough-and Yet, Exactly Enough

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” 
-2 Corinthians 12:9

I’m taking a break from the devotionals for a moment, because yesterday was a huge day for me.
I have some sort of acute anxiety and depression. It’s gotten better over the years but it’s always around, and yesterday was a breaking point for me. I had a big mental breakdown, and one of my friends helped me through it.
For years and years, I realized, I have been living in a way that is trying to pay for the grace that is given to me by Christ. I was trying to re-earn it. And it was causing me to be anxious and depressed, always hating myself because I felt like I was never good enough for God. Never good enough to be used, I always messed up so why should He bless me? I felt like I was a burden to everyone around me.

God gives us His grace freely. Not because we deserve it-and that much was true about my thinking. I don’t deserve the grace He has lavished on me. But I continued striving, continued searching for something that could possibly redeem me in His sight, in my mind. That isn’t true. There is nothing I can do to earn what He has given. Ever. I can’t earn God’s favor.

BUT.
What ISN’T true was my mentality that I am too far gone for Him to pour Himself out on me, that I am messed up beyond repair and that I need to do something to fix it. That’s precisely the point! God uses our brokenness to His glory. HE uses me, messed up as I am, to bring an authentic gospel to those around me. His power is made perfect in my weakness. His abundant love is shown in my abundant tears, I feel His grace and mercy when I am just laying broken before Him.

I don’t know how else to say it. God is so good, His grace is way above and beyond what we deserve-but it is also exactly what we need to be able to find new life. It is more than we deserve but it is enough to deliver. I love my God, so much, for what He has done for me. Can you even fathom it? God, as a man, coming to die for us. For you. For me. He DIED so that we could have this free gift of grace.

Our God is so good.

I’m doing better, I’m taking it day by day. But I know that God’s grace is sufficient, and that even when I’m weak-He is able.