Twenty Sixteen. We're two weeks in. You've made it this far but I wonder how we're all doing on all those resolutions we made. I know I've already dropped the ball on almost everything I decided was going to be different this year, especially those things regarding my relationship to the Lord. All the time commitments I said I was going to make, the reading I was going to do, the times I was so compelled to spend in prayer...all of that has since taken a back seat to the things my flesh wants. That sin to which we said "no more" still tries to entangle us. The pages of our Bibles remain unread. Our hearts continue to beat for everything else in the world first and then to God last.
The great (and counter-cultural) news is that it's okay. The Father's affection towards us and certainly His saving grace over us isn't dependent on our faithfulness to a standard of behavior or completing a checklist. How beautiful is this simple gospel. That in our faithlessness, God is Faithful. Though we deny Him, He does not deny Himself and He is therefore the solid Cornerstone on which the entirety of our lives are secure.
Romans 3:3-4 What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? By no means! Let God be true though every one were a liar, as it is written, "That you may be justified in your words, and prevail when you are judged"
What hope this truth brings to us as His disciples!
Don't let this hope turn you towards apathy, pray that this hope would compel you to energetic action. It brings so much hope and security to know that His grace is abundant in every moment of our lives. However, it's necessary we respond to this great grace with great service.
Romans 6:1-2 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?
Let's not see his mercy towards us as an opportunity to remain unchanged. Thank God that His grace is abundant. It's more than enough for our past, present, and future failures. With that understanding it would be a massive failure and rebellion against God to allow our flesh to convince us that we should continue in our sin, apathy, and selfishness. Let's continue on in the resolutions we made to serve God more effectively and to walk daily with Him. Let's do this understanding that when we fail, as we most certainly will, He is our faithful, unwavering Father that will find us in our failure and reach out His hand and simply say, "Let's continue on together." Let your failure in every area of life lead you to a powerful, personal understanding the gospel. That when you fail and find yourself in the dust He'll lift you up, brush you off, and spur you onwards.
In your victories. In your failures. In your pain. In your joy. He is faithful. He is your hope. Let nothing else come before Him. Knowing His power is in you, rid yourself of everything else, until He is first.