Friday, August 2, 2013

SUSTAINING GRACE

I read some material that I needed to hear for my life right now.  I want to share it with you so it bless you and encourages you also.

"You have his Spirit within you.  Heavenly hosts above you.  Jesus Christ interceding for you.  You have God's sufficient grace to sustain you." (p.97, Grace, Max Lucado)

Allow me to take 2 Corinthians 12:9 and work it backwards.  First, read the verse as is -
  • But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
Now for the backward compatibility of this verse through my paraphrase.

I get the honor and privilege of Christ's power resting on me as I boast in my weakness because that is where God's grace is sufficient and His power is made perfect. 

"Grace takes on an added dimension here.  Paul is referring to sustaining grace.  Saving grace saves us from our sins.  Sustaining grace meets us at our point of need and equips us with courage, wisdom, and strength. It surprises us in the middle of our personal transatlantic flights with ample resources of faith.  Sustaining grace promises not the absence of struggle but the presence of God." (p.98, Grace, Lucado)

"...if God permits the challenge, He will provide the grace to meet it." (p. 99, Grace, Lucado)
Which the Holy Spirit reminds me of 1 Corinthians 10:13"No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it."

Notice the Holy Spirit instructed Paul to tell the believers in Corinth and now us - "so that you can stand up under it" and not necessarily escape it in a flash.  Although God can and has worked in a flash in some situations, here Paul says that a way out has been provided - with God's help you have just got to endure and get out!  It is a sustaining grace.

"Let God's grace dethrone your fears.  Anxiety still comes, for certain.  The globe still heats up; wars still flare up; the economy acts up.  Disease, calamity, and trouble populate your world .  But they don't control it!  Grace does." (p.100, Grace, Lucado)

Allow Grace to sustain you.