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The More...

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The more trouble we face, the more pain we experience, the more God's love and grace becomes all that we need.

The more I see and understand how my sins (even the ones I would call little) are a personal insult and act of rebellion against a holy, holy, holy God ... the more I see the unspeakable, immeasurable value of His gift of forgiveness.

The more I see how I capriciously and wantonly wander, nay, hurry into sin and selfishness ... the more I see that His forgiveness has to be a gift, because I have never earned it and could never earn it.

The more I see myself as God sees me ... the less satisfied I am with myself as I am, and the more I want of Christ.

The more of Christ I seek, and the more I trust in Him to follow in His ways, to live His truth ... the less I find of the sad, sinful person that I was before Jesus rescued me.

The more time I spend delighting in His Word, in His presence, in His counsel, in His ways ... the less time I have to chase the "soap bubbles" around me that glisten in the sun for a short time, but are empty and without substance, leaving a bad taste and distracting me from the truly important things.

The more I take time to pray for those who are important to me, to pray for those in need, to pray to learn how to pray ... and the more I become sensitive to God's prompting, the less time I have for self-seeking and self-gratification. 

The more I see how only love held Jesus to the cross for me ... the more I am ashamed at how little I love Him and sacrifice for Him. 

The more I get assaulted, weighed down, and tossed about by the cares of this world ... the more I long to and need to spend time alone with my Savior and only hope. 

The more I keep my mind set on things that count for eternity: other people, the work of the Lord, praising Him, my own spiritual life, for example ... the more content I find myself and the less patience (and more pity) I have with people who focus only on temporal things and scorn the eternal.

I think of how Christ came to Earth and lived, knowing with every step, with every breath, that He was drawing nearer to a singular moment in time when God would condemn God to death because of sin. God would not be able to look upon Himself, in the person of Jesus, because He who was without sin had become sin for me. Christ became the embodiment of rebellion and abhorrence to God because of me and for me, so that I could at last enter into God's presence. My self, my nature, let alone the rebellious, selfish, contemptible things that I do, would have separated me from God forever. And there was nothing I could do about it.

But God...

But God loved me...

But God loved me with a love that I could never equal, comprehend, deserve, or live to be worthy of ...

But God loved me so much that He gave. He gave of Himself to supply the payment for my sin, to satisfy the judgment that my sin deserved. He gave what I needed and didn't have, so that He could meet all my needs and I would want no more. God gave so He could give me more. Unexplainable, save for the character of God Himself. So unlike me.

Heavenly Father, thank You for so much. Thank You for choosing me before I could choose You. Thank You for giving so much to me before I could do anything for You. Thank You for accepting me as Your child, a joint-heir with Christ. God, keep reminding me of who I am and whose I am. Cause my life to reflect You always. Keep me focused on Your time, Your ways, Your wisdom, Yourself, so that I don't follow the foolish devices of man or my own selfishness. Thank You, Father. In the name of Jesus Christ, my only hope, my only Redeemer, my only source of Life, I pray. Amen.

Written by: Charley Gunter

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