I have no catchy title or opening line for this article because grace needs no formal introduction. It is in itself something beautiful. It is one of the hardest concepts for some people to grasp but one of the most wonderful realities to behold.
Grace, by definition is “the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.” Most people love to hear the word free, but if you have much experience with it, many times the word deviously hides stipulations and requirements. Grace however has no conditions, only that you fully accept it. You don’t have to earn it or try and understand why it is allotted to you. It is freely given because it was paid for by the blood of Christ.
To be transparent, I too have struggled … Read More »
Let me recap part one of this article from December. Earlier generations were taught right is right and wrong is wrong, and many resisted temptations and stood strong for the things they believed. Most of today’s generation have adopted Christianity, not because they have found it to be true and worthy of acceptance but because it seems to be the best option they’ve encountered so far. In today’s culture, believing is made out to be more of a preference based on one’s subjective feelings. For our relationships with God and others to be holy, pure, uplifting, and long-lasting, we can’t be “tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine…” (Ephesians 4:14).
To have convictions is to be thoroughly convinced that something is true—“the state of being convinced of error or compelled to admit the truth.” It … Read More »
In my reading not long ago, the Lord opened my eyes to a simple, yet powerful concept. That morning, I opened my heart a little wider as I re-opened a gift that was purchased long ago. I’m not sure why it never stood out to me, but depending on the tense where forgiveness is used, “give” and “gave” are found in the word itself.
Forgiving is the intentional act of not harboring hurt and hate or feeling like you are owed something. Rather it is a choice you make to give, even in the face of crippling offenses. It is a decision to give another chance, to love, to turn the other cheek, and to let go.
When you forgive, you stop expecting the other person to compensate. Instead you offer love in the face of what scarred you most. … Read More »
History is filled with names and accounts of Christians who stood strong for their beliefs in Jesus Christ—even in the face of torture and execution. They chose death for what they believed rather than renounce their firm faith in God. What strikes fear in the hearts of those who have gone before us today is that we will fall prey to the cultural pressures and make wrong choices, bringing pain and suffering to our lives.
We today are faced with unprecedented pressure. We are exposed to temptation, violence, alcohol, illegal drugs, and a variety of influences that threaten to undo all that has been taught. Understand this about yourself, the way you behave comes FROM something. Your attitudes and actions spring from your value system, and your value system is based on what you believe. Research shows, for example, that … Read More »
If you have ever traveled for a long period of time, you know how important it is to find a place to rest when night falls. On a summer road trip with a friend a couple years ago, one of the highlights was being gifted the opportunity to stay in a five star, luxury hotel. I wanted to hug every staff member, guest, and wall because I was so blissfully happy. We had complimentary valet parking, a view of the city, a lavish room with all the amenities and charms, fruit infused water, and other normally unnecessary features. We were living large to say the least.
This stay was not the usual though. Along my journeys I have checked into some spaces that had me questioning the human race and security of those particular cities. It was less than perfect and … Read More »