Wednesday, January 11, 2012

January Blog Chain

Welcome to January 2012 edition of Christian Writers Blog Chain. Our theme this month is "Quest" For the most part life is a quest. We are always seeking something whether it is  some type of resolution of change or perhaps something less grand than the meaning of life. My personal quest began a few months ago when I discovered that I am not using all the benefits of being a Christian with unlimited access to the throne of grace. I've entitled my post "Finding Grace"  I hope that you'll benefit from my discoveries. Please check out other posts from our talented team of writers on the chain. Their links are listed on the right side bar. May God bless you on your personal quest!

Finding Grace

We are taught in scripture that all we need is found in God's grace, but more often than not we find ourselves begging God for the things we need in prayer. Sometimes we look to other people to learn the secret. Sometimes we try to earn the favor of God by our actions, but we know something is out of balance.

I've spent the last couple months meditating on three familiar scriptures: John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him shall have everlasting life” and John 10:10 “Jesus said,” The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy, but I have come so that you will have life to the full” finally Hebrews 11:1 “ What is faith? It is the confident assurance that what we hope for is going to happen. It is the evidence of things we can not yet see” These three scriptures are stand alone scriptures, no other definition is necessary,

The Lord has been so gracious to us, that although things in the physical world are amiss, because of  the sinful nature of man, His word gives us many assurances of the truth and how we can find balance. Some question God's goodness or His power when their needs are not met, but in meditating on these scriptures, I've discovered an eternal truth. God is good and His love endures forever. He provided all we could ever need BEFORE we had a need.

In the beginning He created light (Genesis 1:3) three days before the universe we know. He created the land, sea, sky, seed-bearing plants and animals before He made the sun. The sun is not the source of life, but God is. This logical progression begins and ends with His power. Everything was prepared for us before we were created, thus proving the forethought and provision of God. So is it so hard to imagine John 3:16?

God's grace is ever present. He never withholds it or changes His mind, our problem is accessing this source. This is where faith comes in. Faith is our response to God's word. It is the amount of trust we have built through spending time with Him. Our experience in faith determines how much of God's grace we access. It was by using a tiny amount of faith, we received salvation and it's by more focus on believing God's word, growing in His love and allowing it to transform our mind (Romans 12:2) that we access His grace more abundantly.

Jesus said, “The thief [Satan] comes to kill, steal and destroy” (John 10:10). He steals the truth from those who are seeking, the innocence from those who trust God. He distorts the truth of God's word by deceiving believers that the war is still on and we need to earn salvation. Satan is a master manipulator who thrives on watching Christians misrepresent Jesus.

We have come to believe that our sin still separate us from receiving the Lord's blessing in our lives-that is simply not true, Jesus paid all our sins on the cross, which separated us from God. He is the source of all blessing. It is our unbelief that stops the flow of blessing in our lives. Jesus said “Ask and you shall receive, Knock and the door will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:8).  “If you ask for anything in my Name you will have it”(John 14:13),''But when you pray, do not doubt that you have received it" (Mark 11;24). “A person who is double-minded can not expect anything from the Lord”(James 1:6-8). We can still sin against each other, which causes separation in our lives, but not from God.

So how do we find and live in balance of God's grace and our faith? First, we need to strip off the trappings of religious thought and renew our minds to the truth of God's Word. We are deeply loved, fully pleasing, totally accepted, and complete in Christ Jesus, who is the author and finisher of our faith! It was the hope we placed in His truth that brought us to His redeeming grace. Second, we need to act in love towards others, remembering we all struggle with the same deceitful enemy.

Becoming grounded in this truth, our faith will grow, allowing us greater access into God's boundless grace that is always available. We will realize we are more than conquerors in this age and how rich we are in spiritual blessings through Jesus. As we grow this way in uncompromised faith, we'll bring greater glory to God and receiving all we need or could hope for.

“ I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in Him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit” Romans 15:13

Copyright©2012 – tathorpe – All Rights Reserved-


Debra Ann Elliott said...

What a wonderful post! Your words are so true and o, how I needed them this morning.

Debra Ann Elliott said...

I also wanted to say thank you for stopping by my blog and your thoughtful comments. Yes He does!

Tracy Krauss said...

The scriptures you chose are excellent ones to meditate upon. Blessings to you this year

Traci B said...

A very encouraging post, Terrie. One thing I'm not sure about in the next to last paragraph: did you mean "uncompromised faith" or some other word entirely?

Terrie said...

@Debra Ann My pleasure- I enjoy your blog and come away blessed. I know the Lord will give you whatever you need to meet the challenges. Blessings

@Tracy K- Thank you, talk about a "nuggets" those scriptures tell the story. Thank you for stopping by. Blessings to you

@Traci B- Thank you sister for your notice of my "oops." Fixed it and another typo I saw. dang auto correct..LOL. Blessings to you

Suzette said...

Deliciously fabulous darling! I enjoyed the read and thank you for those wonderful reminders. :D

Terrie said...

@Suzette-Thank you for stopping by! It is such a blessing to bless others with the things I'm learning. Blessings to you

chris said...

Thank you Terrie, this is very clear and reassuring. Our life will always be a quest... but when we believe we have a trusty companion :)

From Carols Quill said...

This is a wonderful post, Terri. Our life group began a study of grace just last night. We're hoping to become further awed by God's grace and be able to extend more grace to others because of it.

Grace and faith truly go together. Thank you for the reminder.

Terrie said...

Thank you Chris and Carol for your very welcome comments. I look forward to your thoughts. Blessings to you both!

E. G. Lewis said...

Excellent post. In the end there's only one quest that truly matters.
Peace and Blessings

Jack Brown said...

spot on lass
Gods Riches At Christs Expense
Biiiig hug

Christine Henderson said...

Non-believers and even some believers think that it's all about religion but forget that it's a one-on-one relationship with God built on faith. We need to look at life through God's eyes and not ours.

Cecilia Marie Pulliam said...

Yes, we do indeed need to remember it's all about our personal relationship with God, not based on man's idea of ceremony and we should be on a quest to deepen that relationship. I love the scriptural quotes. Much to contemplate and meditate on.

Scott Fields said...

I like the way you stated this: He provided all we could ever need BEFORE we had a need.

So true. In fact . . . we only HAVE needs because God designed something to fit them. There's no emptiness in our life that doesn't have something to fill it, and no desire God doesn't want to fill himself. He may just do it in a way we don't quite expect (or understand).

Great post, Terrie. Keep up the good writing!

Cindee Snider Re said...

The verse from Romans you chose to end this post is perfect! We only love, breathe, hope, ARE, because of God. Only in Him is there life and that abundant. Beautiful words, Terrie! Thank you.

From Carols Quill said...

Terrie--I just received the Liebster Blog award and am passing it on to you and 4 others from CW. You can get the award picture off my site and plaster it onto yours. Forward it on to 5 others to encourage them. I hope you feel encouraged by this. I've really been enjoying your blog and wanted you to know!

I will have my post up Friday morning (tomorrow) with your name and link to your blog for my readers to find you.

This award comes with my prayer that God will bless your writing.

Deborah K. Anderson said...

Very well said, Terrie, and very well-rounded. Thank you so much for posting this. (I loved the picture that came with it. It's one of my favorites!)

Terrie said...

Thank you all for your wonderful support of this ministry. You have blessed and encouraged me on this quest!