Where My Journey Begins
I promise that I will not talk about grace in every post.
But in this post I will.
I believe that, as this is my first post, I need to explain a little about what this blog is all about and what my intentions are for it. What you take away from it is up to you, but I need to clarify this for my own sake.
Recently we sang “Come, Thou Fount” in our family devotions. Since grace in general and the purpose of this blog in particular were on my mind, the final verse stood out to me. I don’t think I could word my own thoughts much better than the song writer did:
Oh, to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness like a fetter
Bind my wandering heart to Thee:
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, oh, take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.
I have a long history with grace. As a very little girl, I discovered divine grace for the first time when I recognized I was a sinner, repented of that sin and believed on the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace is unmerited favor. I could not merit God’s favor before I became His child, and now that I am His child grace is still the basis of God’s relationship with me.
How beautiful it is when a child enters the kingdom of heaven! Unfortunately, however, my sins seemed to have no end. As I entered my teen years, I realized how much I required a steady supply of grace each day.
Because, to be honest, I sin all the time. I desperately wish I didn’t. My pride (which, incidentally, marches at the forefront of all my sins) would be satisfied if I could be self-sufficient, if I could avoid sinning by merely choosing to.
God speaks to my pride in James 4:6.
“But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, ‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’”
God gives grace to the humble.
I need grace so badly.
The passage goes on in verse 8 to say, “Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.”
I am on a journey to draw near to God. This is not a physical journey, marked by a map and designated by landmarks. It is a spiritual journey. The setting is this physical world, but the main character is my heart. My heart is constantly groping for satisfaction, but it is constantly finding everything physical to be only a shadow of its desires, false promises that supply a temporal comfort to an eternal desire.
All I need is God.
And yet I fall back into sin, struggling to get back up, to keep pressing nearer to God.
These days I am learning that grace is an essential part of life in Christ. These days I am finding that “the righteous falls seven times and rises again” (Proverbs 24:16). These days I am trusting that if I acknowledge God in all my ways, “he will make straight my paths” (Proverbs 3:6). These days I am growing in my understanding of God’s unlimited love for a sinful person like me. “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). These days I keep traveling forward because I know that what lies behind will not satisfy. I’ve already tried it.
These days are my journeys of grace.