By Definition: Grace of God is His unmerited favor. Unmerited, because there is absolutely nothing we can do or say to deserve to receive our prayers answered, problems solved, or even to become more and more like Jesus!. We cannot be good enough to deserve this free love gift from Father God. We’re talking about infinite, omnipresent, omniscient Holy God, it is kindness from God we don't deserve. It’s Father God always loving us, always helping us, always making a way, from His virtue, His goodness. There is nothing we have done, nor can ever do to earn this favor. It is a gift from God. Grace is His divine assistance to walk in sanctification, to be set apart for a holy use. Notice that in that definition there isn’t any place that says that the grace of God is to be presumed upon in such a way that we really don’t care much about sin. There is a point of view that I see many Christians fall under that I call “Greasy Grace” …it’s a presumiing on the gift of God’s grace in such a way that we use the premise of living under His grace as a license to sin, as a justification to do whatever we want, this often looks and thinks like the worldl looks and things. It’s the mindset that says after all, we are forgiven our sins of the past and the present and even the future by Jesus at Calvary right? We don’t have to be so concerned about sinning or even living under God’s law, because now we live under grace…not law! That is true. We are not under the Law, we are under Grace, but it’s a slippery slope we walk when we just blow off our sins because they have been forgiven. When we get out of balance in this way confession and repentance become obsolete…and we become blinded to our desperate need for Him. Grace isn’t about having an OK to sin cause Jesus spilt His blood for forgiveness, grace is God’s empowerment to live a Holy life! Grace is Him guiding us, Grace is Him loving us! Grace is Him making a way for us to be in His presence!
Grace is a FREE gift, we do not earn it! God pours His grace out for us and on us FREELY, but although it’s free, there is a cost to receiving it and walking in it. The price we have to pay is the old man, our old patterns of thinking, its about allowing Him to make us holy…set apart for Him! its all about surrender!
The Lord loves us all the same, He doesn’t just love, He IS love AND He is available to all who seek Him! But when we take a look around at other peoples lives, we get to thinking that He favors that one or this one more than us…what’s up with that?Does He love her more than me? It seems like everytime I turn around the Lord is making a way for her, He is pouring out His favor on her life! I want that Lord! I want to experience Your grace like that! Father, then began to lovingly and gently reveal to me that I and so many others actually get in our own way! He showed me how our attitudes and mindsets actually keep us from walking in His grace, the unmerited favor of God.
Here are just a few of the mindsets we can have that are obstacles to receiving the favor or God: (just a note, these are minsets that BOTH male and female can have)
Super Sally Super Sally is multi talented and gifted in many areas, she can do everything! I am reminded of that I am woman song from the seventies….I can scoop up a great big dipper full of lard from the drippin's can
Throw it in the skillet, go out and do my shopping, be back before it melts in the pan 'Cause I'm a woman! W-O-M-A-N
I can rub and scrub til this old house is shinin' like a dime
Feed the baby, grease the car, and powder my face at the same time
Super Sally is the Mom, the chauffer, the nurse, the chef, the provider, the best mom, the best wife, the best grand mom…always running to “do”…Super Sally has a heart for others and loves to help out where needed, but often she is so busy with her life, that her time before the Lord is minimal/ This forces her to lean to her own strength and understanding to accomplish these things, more and more…She begins to feel tired and those naggy little emotions begin to rear their ugly little heads…the biting remarks, petty irritations, hypersensitvity…she often finds herself feeling unappreciated and even lonely in the midst of the orderly chaos that is her life.
I got this Irwin Irwin doesn’t really mean to be so independent or controlling, he just doesn’t want to Bother God with things he can take care of hisself. After all he is the MAN! He takes over situations and circusmstances and does not submit them or his self to the Lord. It starts out small, but there is a pride in independence that wants to stand on it’s own…making humilitty before the Lord and serving others…harder and harder.
Pitiful Penny loves parties, pity parties..Penny just cant seem to see the glass as half full…even when things are good, someone is not treating her right, or life always has her down. She s the one that often points out “that it’s always just one thing after another!” Often Pitiful Penny seeks to bring others to her party so that she can get some validation and attention…any attention. Pitiful Penny can’t seem to get past her circumstance or situation to receive the love and grace of God!
Raging Rhonda/Raging Randy is mad …angry…at everything! They get mad at inatimant objects, TV, vaccuum, car, curlng iron, coffee pot, even other cars on the road! They are quick to judge and criticize others. They are often dissatisfied with just about everyone and everything…nothing is as the expects it to be. No one can live up to their standards, they are NOT pleased. Everything seems to be “unfair” Often this kind of rage comes from wounds, but acknowlediging that and seeking help would be a sign of weakness to Raging Rhonda/Randy
Wounded Wendy Wounded Wendy is just hurting inside, she sees everything, alll her situations and all her relationships through hurts and disappointment. She looks for things to soothe the pain, drugs, alcohol, sex, food addiction, shopping maniacs, FB…..Looking for love in all the wrong places. Wendy is so hurt that she cannot imagine anyone could love her or favor her She knows in her head that Jesus died for her, but nobody knows the trouble I feel….or what I have been through
Wretched Rita Wretched Rita really doesn’t like herself. She cant seem to get past the things she has done, the people she hurt, the lives that she destroyed, the broken relationships of the past She believes in Jesus, but that forgiveness stuff she really is not too sure about all that! How can He forgive me for what I have done, I am too bad to receive His love and grace! Rita often keeps to herself, even reclusive…no one would want someone like her around. Wretched Rita really doesn’t see herself as a new creation…the old one is too bad of a sinner to let go of. She sees herself as not good enough or not mattering and She often makes rash decisions that harm her in the end because she has a need to punish herself.
Then there is
Complacent Carrie or Lukewarm Luke They are just fine with things the way they are! They see their life as good and doesn’t need anything or really anyone new in their life. Carrie and Luke both hate and fear change. They are always afraid of the apple that upsets the apple cart…or is always dreading that other shoe to drop! They oftem becomes stale and stagnate, no creativity, mechanically living their life…the ups and downs have all evened out to this flat line of living.. There is no need to seek God, His favor or even more of His love cause I am fine right where I am!
There are many other mindsets that keep us from walking in and receiving His grace…Jealous Judy, Gossiping Gerty, Depressed Dan, Fearful Frieda and Fred Religious Ruby, and many more. The point is that all these mindsets will keep us from recognizing and walking in the Favor of God in and on our lives! All these Mindsets are …Sin! Rhe sin in these mindsets is that we are walking in self absorption
The Bible clearly shows us that “Sin is pretending that we are the center of the universe.” You and I want to be “the master of our fate, and the captain of our soul” rather than allowing God His rightful place as Lord over our lives. It has been said, “The problem with Sin is the ‘I’ in the middle of it.
Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Every one of us needs help. We are not God. We have needs. We have confusion. We have liimitations of all kinds. We need help! At the bottom of our hearts we know that we do not deserve the help we need. And so we feel trapped. I need help to live my life and to handle death and to cope with eternity- help with my family, with my spouse (orlack there of lol), my children, my loneliness, my job, my health, my finances. I need help.
But I don’t deserve the help that I need.
So what can I do? I can try to deny it all and be a superwoman who doesn’t need help. Or I can try to drown it all and throw my life into a pool of sensual pleasures. Or I can simply give way to the paralysis of despair. Jesus Christ became the HighPriest to shatter the despair with hope and to humble that superwoman and to rescue that drowning wretch. Yes, we all need help. Yes, none of us deserves the help we need. But say no to despair and pride and lechery. Look at what God says. Because we have a Great High Priest, the throne of God is a throne of grace! And the help we get at the throne of mercy and grace is help in time of need. Grace to help! Not deserved help, gracious help.
You are not trapped.! Say no to the lie. We need help. We don’t deserve it, But we can have it right now and forever.
Let’s take a few minutes and ask the Lord what obstacles that you have that keep you from walking in the fullness of His favor, of His grace. He will speak to your heart right now about this…His grace has already gone before us and made the way…
Father we thank You for Your grace! we desire to be rid of all obstacles, all mindsets that would keep us from You! We come to You now with a repentant and contrite heart…show us Lord, put Your finger on that thing or things that need to go! Help us Lord to release these things, to recognize the strongholds that are not of You and just surrender it all to You….Show us Your way O Lord, teach us Your path in Jesus name. amen