Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Completely overwhelmed...

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. 

 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Ephesians 2:1-9

Yesterday in chapel, Dr. Olson was talking about how he's always hearing Christians say that Christianity is all about the Gospel, and then he hears other Christians arguing back that it isn't all about the gospel.  He argued that he can see the point on both sides.  The Christians who say it's all about the gospel are wanting us to always remember the grace that saved us...and the Christians on the other side say it's more than just about the gospel, because they say that it's about growing in Christ also, after we accept Christ.

In reality...they're both right.  Christianity is about growing in Christ, but we should NEVER get over the grace that Christ extended to us in our salvation.  The minute we do, we are in danger of letting our Christianity become cold, and robotic...

I love this passage of scripture that I posted at the top.  Notice how I separated it into two passages.  Verses 1-3 talk about where we were before salvation.  We were dead in our sins...living our lives under the power of the devil...fulfilling the desires of our flesh...slaves to our lustful passions, and sin...living just like the rest of the world...

What follows, in the next paragraph is where our hope lies..."But God..."...I love this...we know that what follows is the exception...all these enslaving sins follow before it..."But God..."...loved us...and offered us grace. He reached down to us in our sins, and loved us.  I picture myself as this broken person...fallen down at His feet in shame...realizing that I am so far below Him...and yet he reached down to me in love and lifted me up to His side.  Why?  Why would He love me, and save me...a sinner?  I could do nothing to save myself...but God...

We as Christians should never lose sight of the grace that saved us...for it is what keeps us humble, and constrains us to love Him, and live for Him...

Monday, February 6, 2012

Prayer Request...

A great friend from my church back home is going through some difficulties with her pregnancy, and she has recently started a blog about the situation.  To go to her blog, click here.

She could really use a lot of prayer, but you can tell when you read her blog, that God is giving her the grace to see this through.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Your Grace Still Amazes Me

by:  Phillips, Craig, and Dean.

My faithful Father, enduring Friend
Your tender mercy’s like a river with no end
It overwhelms me, covers my sin
Each time I come into Your presence
I stand in wonder once again

Your grace still amazes me
Your love is still a mystery
Each day I fall on my knees
‘Cause Your grace still amazes me 
Your grace still amazes me 

Oh, patient Saviour, You make me whole
You are the Author and the Healer of my soul
What can I give You, Lord, what can I say
I know there’s no way to repay You
Only to offer You my praise

It’s deeper, it’s wider
It’s stronger, it’s higher
It’s deeper it’s wider
It’s stronger, it’s higher
Than anything my eyes can see

Your grace still amazes me
Your love is still a mystery
Each day I fall on my knees
‘Cause Your grace still amazes me 
Your grace still amazes me 

I made a video for this song on vimeo...check it out by clicking here.