Grace: God Is Able

water-from-wellWhen I lived in the farming community of Hazelton, Kansas, I enjoyed the slow pace of life, and the many wonderful people I met there.  One of the few negatives was the water. Because it was so bad I carried a water jug in my truck, so I could fill it at an artesian well.

When I read 2 Corinthians 9:8, I think of that refreshing free-flowing well of cool water:

God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.

Grace was a theme of emphasis with the Apostle Paul, and it’s one of the feel-good doctrines of the Bible that people like to discuss.

Grace is a small word, but its five letters contain truth of epic proportion; and, its spectrum is as colorful as the rainbow.  Consider a few of these:

  • Grace is available to help you grow as a Christian—2 Peter 3:18: Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity.
  • If you have the can’t-do-blues, God provides empowering grace—2 Corinthians 12:9: My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
  • There is an extra portion of grace available to the humble—James 4:5-6: He gives grace to the humble.
  • You can confidently ask for it—Hebrews 4:16: Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need.

The most important aspect of grace and the one on which the preceding stand is saving grace—Romans 5:1-2: Since we have been declared righteous by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of God’s glory.

The grace that offers you peace with God, might be the missing peace that will solve your life’s puzzle.

Amazing Grace is a beloved hymn that was written by  John Newton, and he spoke of the power of grace: I am not what I ought to be. I am not what I want to be. I am not what I hope to be. But still, I am not what I used to be. And by the grace of God, I am what I am.

 

 

 

The Whistle of God

whistling-clipart-mickwhistle1When the high school wrestling coach lives next door to you, there’s a good chance you are going to learn to like the sport.  When he moves out of town, and his house is purchased by the new coach, there’s an even better chance that you’re going to learn a little something about wrestling.

On Friday evening and Saturday night of last week the undivided attention of most sports fans was focused on basketball—not me. I was splitting time between basketball and the NCAA finals in wrestling.

Like many of those muscle-ripped young men with chiseled bodies that reflected hours in the weight room and years  contending on the mats, my son started wrestling when he was 6 years old.  Those kid’s tournaments were loud and noisy with all of the young wrestlers, the screaming parents, and multiple matches running at the same time.

To make sure Wade wasn’t distracted by a false whistle, I gave him some advice:  “Son, You wrestle until you either clearly hear the ref’s whistle or you feel the touch of his hands.”

Wade scored points in some matches because he continued to wrestle when his opponent stopped.   The other boy had heard a false whistle from an adjoining mat, and he quit before the ref halted the match.

When I heard the ref’s whistle on Saturday night, I thought of the message it signaled.  The ears of the wrestlers were tuned to its sound, and they responded in a split second.  Their muscular bodies were like a tensely coiled spring that sprang into action, or they would immediately relax and stop wrestling—all in response to the whistle.

It may surprise you to learn that God also whistles:

“I will whistle for them and gather them in, for I have redeemed them, and they shall be as many as they were before. Though I scattered them among the nations, yet in far countries they shall remember me, and with their children they shall live and return (Zechariah 10:8-10).”

Some people believe this whistle is a sound that is only  heard and recognized by God’s children.  I equate it with the words of John 10:27-30:

“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.  And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.  My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand.  I and My Father are one.”

During my Summer breaks from school, I spent very little time inside the house.  I was either playing a game of baseball, wading the creek, or following a trail through a field.  When my stomach told me it was getting close to suppertime, I would begin to listen for Dad’s whistle–it was the signal that said:  “It’s time to come home.”

Some day God will do the same.  He will whistle and call His children home to heaven.