It Takes Courage
Leadership takes courage.
It takes courage to parent teenagers.
It takes courage to forgive an unfaithful spouse, again.
It takes courage to remain ethical in an unethical world.
It takes courage to live beneath your means financially in a “spend, spend” consumer-crazy world.
How do we live courageously as students, parents, pastors–as humans?
The power to live courageously is anchored in the doctrine of justification.
The doctrine of justification is the heart of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is not about escaping earth to float on clouds like an overweight baby.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the audacious announcement of what God has done through Jesus and what Jesus now wants to do in— and can accomplish through—willing lives, to advance His Kingdom on earth.
In Galatians 2:21, Paul, the former racist and Jesus-hater, says these words,
I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.
At the heart of the Gospel is this precious reality. On the cross, Jesus traded His righteousness for our unrighteousness (2 Corinthians 5:21; Phil. 3:7-9).
As a result, when God the Papa looks at you, He sees you not only forgiven, but as righteous as Jesus. Why? Because you are in Jesus and Jesus is in you.
Vertically, we are as righteous as God Himself because God Himself gave us His righteousness (Rom. 5:1-2).
Internally, we now can be secure because our performance no longer determines our value. My value is now determined by Jesus. So now I can forever sift life through the righteousness Jesus has given me as a gift (Rom. 5:17).
Horizontally, in my relationships, I can be courageous to live in humility because my worth is not determined by my accomplishments. I can apologize when I’ve hurt someone. I can live within, or below, my means because I’m not trying to impress people.
And, I can now see people through the eyes of grace–the way Jesus saw me.
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