Monday, April 28, 2014

Amazing Grace

The words to this hymn have been a steadying force in my life since I was very young and have proven to be true in my testimony of hope.
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Amazing Grace has been one of my favorite hymns since I was a little girl, but, in life, grace has always been one of those elusive things that I've sought after, but could never seem to find in full. I didn't receive a lot of grace growing up, so, as an adult, I really didn't even know what grace was. I didn't know how to receive it, and I, certainly, didn't know how to give it. And I'm still not very good at either, but I'm learning.

This is what I've learned about grace so far...

Grace is free. It can't be earned, bought, or sold. It must be given, and given freely with no strings attached. Our salvation comes as a gift of God's grace and is appropriated by the response of faith.
Faith in Jesus Christ is God's requirement for receiving His free gift of salvation.

I think for most of my fifty-two years, I've not understood the definition of words like faith, grace, justice, and mercy. Even now I find myself struggling, having to go back, look them up, and study them out as I slip back into old habits and patterns that I detest. It's very frustrating, but, little by little, day-by-day, here's what is slowly sinking down below surface level...

Faith is what we believe about Jesus and our heart's response to Him. Faith means believing and trusting in Jesus, yielding our wills to Him, and totally committing ourselves to Him. It requires repentance, and obedience, to Jesus and His Word as a way of life. It involves a heartfelt personal devotion and an attachment to Jesus. It is being loyal to Him.

Justice is getting what we deserve.

Mercy is being spared what we deserve

Grace is being given what we do not deserve.

Grace is God giving His only begotten Son on behalf of undeserving sinners...imperfect, very flawed people...like me. Grace is multiplied to believers by the Holy Spirit, imparting forgiveness, acceptance, and the power to do God's will.

While given freely to those who will accept it, God's grace must be diligently desired and sought after. It is received when we humble ourselves before the Lord, hear, study, and obey His Word, and pray. On the other hand, God's grace can be resisted, set aside, or even abandoned, by a believer.

No one can be saved by works or good deeds. Nor can anyone be saved through strenuous self-effort to keep God's commandments. One can only be saved by the grace of God. And oh! What an amazing grace it truly is!

May all who call upon Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior learn to accept God's grace for themselves, and may they (we...I) learn to pass it along, and give it freely, to others.  

"For as by one man's [Adam's] disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one [Jesus] shall many be made righteous. Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 5:19-21). 

AMAZING GRACE

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.
T'was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.
Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come;
'Tis Grace that brought me safe thus far
and Grace will lead me home.
The Lord has promised good to me.
His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.
Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease,
I shall possess within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.
Yes, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease;
I shall profess, within the vail,
A life of joy and peace.
The following stanza was written by an an anonymous author, often replacing the sixth stanza, or inserted as the fourth.
When we've been there ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun.
We've no less days to sing God's praise
Than when we've first begun.
Chorus:
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.


(If you'd like to know more about the amazing history behind the song Amazing Grace, then I recommend that you acquire a copy of Amazing Grace the movie and watch it. It is very good!) 

Until Next Time...

All My Love,
~Rebecca




2 comments:

  1. I'm amazed at how much we have in common Sister Rebecca.
    Blessings,
    Laura

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Blessings to you, Sweet Friend! Have a blessed day! <3

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