Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Miracle of Grace

Jesus said as He prayed, "And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent." (Jn.17:3) I recently, just today actually, have begun to recover from a nasty (is there any other kind?) stomach bug, & missed 2 days of work. I rarely miss work, so I know I was sick! But as I was just a few minutes ago thanking the Lord for bringing me through it, I began to think about folks who have illnesses from which they will not recover, barring a miracle from God. That also made me think that the grace of God itself is the greatest miracle of all. Just recently I heard a lady say that she had been diagnosed with inoperable cancer just over a year ago, but that this last year since that diagnosis had been the best year of her life! The reason: she had come to know the Lord better! That brought our verse to mind when Jesus prayed to His Father about what the experience of eternal life is all about! I could just as easily have titled this post, "the miracle that is grace" since there can be no greater miracle.
As I look back over my life, I can recall at least once when we were going through a time that I would not wish upon an enemy, but I also recall the Lord's closeness & peace as almost never before. Sometimes those who don't know God question why or how a supposed as they would say, loving God could allow all the sickness & disaster in the world. Of course, none of us presumes to be able to answer all questions of this nature, & I most certainly do not mean to minimize the pain that people suffer. But we know from God's Word that sin is the reason that pain & suffering & ultimately death have invaded God's once-perfect creation, & that those who know Him through faith in His Son have eternal life in Him. This world & its sin & suffering as well as its delights are not all we have. We have the Lord in our lives to comfort us as we go through it, & also eternal life with Him in Heaven. That is at least part of why the Bible speaks of eternal life not only as in Heaven after we leave this world, but beginning the moment we trust Christ! Those who have neglected or rejected Him only have the here & now, & therefore when they lose it, they lose it all. We as believers in Christ can say with Paul, "For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain." (Phil.1:21) But no one has to be without Christ! He died for all & therefore for YOU & me! Thank you for letting me get this off my chest! May the Lord bless you all.