If you’re like me, you know it was God’s grace that drew you into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ (Eph. 2:8), yet you often struggle to know how to apply that same grace on the other side of the cross.
What role does grace play in our lives as women who love and follow Jesus? How does God intend for us to make use of the grace He has lavishly granted us in Christ (Eph. 1:6)? And what does that look like practically in our lives today as single women, wives, moms, and grandmothers?
I wish these had been the questions flooding my mind as my friend and I drove to a recent Life Action Summit. Instead, my thoughts were consumed with circumstances far beyond my control, and a plaguing sense of my own sinfulness. As we drove into the church parking lot, I prayed, “Lord, let me hear Your voice tonight; show me my need as You see it.”
As I entered the auditorium searching for a seat, my eyes fell on the outline for the evening session. I couldn’t believe it. I had heard the session would be on “brokenness,” and had been preparing all day by rehearsing once again the sins that so easily entangle my heart. But the message had been changed. God had already been at work answering my prayer! “Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear” (Isa. 65:24). The focus for the evening would be... GRACE!
My eyes filled with tears as I whispered, “Really, Lord... It’s grace I need? It’s grace You’re whispering to this heart overwhelmed by circumstances and sin?”
As the speaker shared a message saturated with practical applications of grace (more on that later!), he connected the dots in my head by listing the two primary purposes for grace in the life of a believer. We need grace daily to:
- Respond rightly to the conviction of sin.
- Respond rightly to the circumstances of life.
The reality of my own sin and the circumstances of life had threatened to undo me because I had stopped crying out for God’s grace. I had fallen into the trap of dealing with my sin and circumstances in the power of my own strength, and had inadvertently set aside the grace of God.
“Do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing” (Gal. 2:21).
Oh how sweet were the reminders of His incomparable grace that night! Amazing, undeserved grace lavished on those in Christ!
"In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished upon us" (Eph. 1:7-8).
Oh, weary soul, is your heart burdened today with circumstances? Has life taken a very different turn than you expected? Has hopelessness or despair flooded your soul because of your sin? Are you living in shame, guilt, or condemnation? Would you be willing to simply ask the Father to show you your need today as He sees it? May He remind you afresh of His grace today (Phil. 4:23).