Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Gift of Grace

"Real love isn't our love for God, but his love for us. God sent his Son to be the sacrifice by which our sins are forgiven. Dear friends, since God loved us this much, we must love each other.

No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is truly in our hearts.

God has given us his Spirit. That is how we know that we are one with him, just as he is one with us." 1 John 4:10-13 CEV

How do you see love? Is love to you what you see on the movie screens, the soap operas, the prime time evening television shows? Is it what you read about in those romance novels?

True love isn't any of those, as you can guess. True love is what our Heavenly Father did for us. True love is knowing a person's sin, and die for that person anyway. True love is when you don't even blink an eye when asked to protect this person. True love loves even when it is not returned.

The Bible are full of stories that are true love stories--and the greatest one being that of Jesus loving us to the point of sacrifice.

Can you love that way? Have you ever loved that way? Love to the point that all else fades away--that you instinctly and without thinking, sacrifice yourself or your own needs, desires--for the betterment of the one you love.

I truly enjoy how John starts this out--"real love isn't our love for God--But His love for us." You see, John knew that it is usually so easy to love someone if they love you. If that person was good and kind and pleasant to be around, yes, it is usually easy for you to love that person. But what about the person that isn't so nice? Isn't so pleasant? Isn't so good.? What then? Do you love them then?

That is when grace comes in. God, in His Graciousness, loves us in all the above unlovable times. Our God loves us even when we don't love ourselves.

Please remember, that salvation is God-given, God-driven, God-empowered--it is a gracious gift from God to you. It is not necessarily a gift from you to your Heavenly Father--even though when you come home and accept Him as your Lord and Savior, your Father is leaping for joy and happiness.

Grace was created by God and given to man as a gift to show His true love for you--all you have to do is graciously accept it and then past it on.

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