(1 Corinthians 15:10 CEV) But God treated me with undeserved grace! He made me what I am, and his grace wasn’t wasted. I worked much harder than any of the other apostles, although it was really God’s grace at work and not me.
This morning we continue our series “Grace that is Simply Amazing.” Last week we closed out the week with a message on purpose, vision, faith and grace. If you have not read it, I recommend you do. I believe the Father shared great truth through me in that message.
This past weekend I was meditating on grace quite a bit and the Father highlighted to me two facets of grace. It’s not like this was groundbreaking news, because I already knew each aspect individually, but I had not looked at them in the light in which He shared it with me. There is one facet of grace where you do not do a thing and then there is another where you are empowered to do God’s will. Let me explain.
Grace where you don’t do: This is the aspect of grace most are familiar with. I spent the first part of this series highlighting incident after incident where Jesus blessed people, not because they did anything, or because they deserved it, but solely by the grace of God. The woman caught in adultery, for example, did not perform God’s will, nor did she did not do anything to earn her breakthrough, but she received forgiveness and redemption by the grace of God. When Samuel came to Jesse’s house and anointed David to be the next king of Israel, it was not because David did anything to initiate the contact, it was purely by the grace of God. The author of the text I have provided for you, the Apostle Paul, was terrorizing the church and working against God when God called him to the gospel ministry, purely by grace. This aspect of grace is undeserved, unmerited, often unexpected, and almost unbelievable. It’s grace, not just any grace, it is the grace of God, and yes, it is amazing.
Grace to do: There is another facet of grace, one that is not as recognized. Not only does God call us by grace, but He then graces us to fulfill the calling. Said another way, God gives us our purpose by grace (without us earning it), and He then gives us the grace to achieve it. In the scripture I have provided Paul acknowledged that God treated him with undeserved grace. Without grace Paul could have never received such an awesome assignment. Paul did not deserve it, but God purposed him by grace to have it. And then Paul explains how he had to work hard to fulfill his calling. Paul put all his effort into maximizing his purpose and potential. But even then Paul acknowledged that it was by the grace of God. Without grace Paul would not have been called and without grace he could not fulfill the call. God gave Paul grace before he lifted a finger to perform God’s will, and He then gave him grace to fulfill the assignment he had been given.
So what does this mean to you today? It means that both facets of grace are in operation in your life. I may not know you, but I can nonetheless make that statement without fear. Why? Because God deals with us all this way. He looks past our faults, flaws, and failures, in order to call us to fulfill the assignment He ordained for us before the foundations of the world. And once we answer the call, He gives us the grace to fulfill it. So, receive His assignment by grace, knowing that you could never earn it. And then walk out into your assignment with His grace, knowing that you will never be able to fulfill it without Him.
Closing Confession: Father, I thank You for this teaching. Both facets of grace are in operation in my life. I acknowledge the fact that You called me by grace. I was completely undeserving, but You called me anyway. You sent Your son Jesus to die for me, before I ever lifted a finger for You, and You then tirelessly pursued me, even when I wanted nothing to do with You. Yes Father, You called me by Your immeasurable grace. And now that I have answered the call, You give me the grace to run my race. I have grace to do everything You have called me to do and I declare that I will. I step out into this day knowing that You are ON me, IN me, WITH me, and FOR me, to accomplish all that You established for me to accomplish, before the foundations of the world. I pursue my purpose by Your grace and I will never cease to give You praise for loving me, in spite of me, and for giving me such a great assignment. Like Paul, I say, I am who I am by Your amazing grace and Your grace towards me shall not be in vain. In Jesus’ name.
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper.