Us vs. Them

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There is no such thing as “us” and “them” in the kingdom of God.

There is just us.

Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.”
‭‭Luke‬ ‭5:31‬ ‭NIV‬‬

One who has been touched by grace will no longer look on those who stray as “those evil people” or “those poor people who need our help.” Nor must we search for signs of “love-worthiness”.  Grace teaches us that God loves because of who God is, not because of who we are.

– Phillip Yancey

We are all in need of the grace and mercy of God…everyday.

Give some to yourself today and give some to someone else too, I guarantee they need it.

A Reminder

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Good morning.

I wanted to remind you, this fine Friday, that you are saved by grace so that you can:

Love by grace,
Forgive by grace,
Grow by grace,
Give by grace,
Work by grace,
Eat by grace,
LIVE BY GRACE

“And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.”

‭‭Romans‬ ‭11:6‬ ‭NIV‬

How easy it is to slip into the flesh work after we accept Christ’s gift of salvation. Sometimes it takes minutes not days.

We begin to start working on “being better” and “doing better”. We begin to work on being a good Christian. But it doesn’t work, does it?

“Self -improvement is no more God’s plan than self-salvation. God’s plan is not just for us to be saved by grace -it is for us to live by grace. God’s plan is for my daily life to be given, guided, guarded and energized by the grace of a God.”

– John Ortberg,
The Me I Want to Be, pg 39.

God hasn’t redeemed you so that you can be a “good Christian”, He has redeemed you to walk in the power and freedom that have been bought for you by the Cross.

He has opened wide the door for you to walk with Him every day and draw from His unquenchable source of love to pour into every area of your life.

Grace is more than a prayer to say before you eat, it is a lifestyle.

So, go ahead and LIVE it
and have a fantastic weekend.

Not I

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There is a moment in your walk with God when you realize that possessing the land is going to be hard work.

And then there is a bigger moment when you realize that all your hard work cannot do what only God can do: set people free, love them relentlessly, deliver them consistently, fill them with His Spirit and His Love.

“Haven’t I worked hard trying to do more than any of the others?

Even then, my work didn’t amount to all that much.

It was God giving me the work to do,

God giving me the energy to do it.”

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭15:10-11‬ ‭MSG

Yet, not I but the grace of God within me….

It is a sweet moment.
A defining moment.

The moment you realize that the work of God doesn’t depend on you but that you get to join in the work of God by depending on Him more and more.

It isn’t about you. You are a part of a family, a part of the mission, a part of a vision born in heaven and lived on earth.

“So whether you heard it from me or from those others, it’s all the same: We spoke God’s truth and you entrusted your lives.”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭15:10-11‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Love people grace-full-y, speak God’s truth and then let Him do the heavy lifting of changing people’s lives.

Grab Hold


The day will come when the work God does in you will be complete.

A day when all your broken parts are mended and all the gaping holes are filled.

A day when God’s work of re-creation is done and you are a new creation, through and through.

But until then, you are in the process of being created new.

Until then, every fiery trial that seems like it will destroy you, is purifying you.

God can (and does) use the very things the enemy means for harm, for your good.

“Pure gold put in the fire comes out of it proved pure; genuine faith put through this suffering comes out proved genuine.

When Jesus wraps this all up, it’s your faith, not your gold, that God will have on display as evidence of his victory. (‭1 Peter‬ ‭1‬:‭6-7‬ MSG)

One day you will stand before God healed and whole.

Until then, grab hold of grace and don’t quit.

What new thing is Jesus creating in you?


What old thing is being burned out by your current trial?

Amazing Grace 

The same God who set the sun with enough energy to burn as long as it must has given you everything you need to accomplish what he has called you to do. 

He apportioned the exact right amount for it. Don’t worry about running out of it, for you are not the keeper of it. You are the receiver of his grace and all he asks of you is to trust him and use everything he has given you. 

Don’t hold back, don’t portion it out. 

You do have time. 

You do have the strength. 

You are able because you are wrapped in the amazing grace of God. 

But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. Ephesians 4:7 NIV

What do need God’s grace to do today?

A Different Story

  
What is the story you are living? The one that plays like a background narrative in your life? The one that fuels your choices and drives your focus? 

The one you tell yourself before you go to sleep, the one that you wake up with before you have energy to over think it?

Are you trying and failing? 

Are you hurting and falling?

Are you strong and fine?

Are you doing good and being good, until your doing bad and being bad?

Jesus came to change your story.

Jesus radically altered the whole basis of “right living” before God. Instead of working every day to live right before him, you receive grace everyday to walk with him and trusting God to shape right living in you. It’s an on going conversation and intimate relationship.

But sometimes you revert to your old story, the old dialogue, the old labels,  old mode of operation. You begin to “do” more than “be” and work more than receive. 

Everyday is a new day to learn how to live different.

Deep trusting is a different than incessant trying.

Welcoming God to walk with you is different than working hard to walk with God.

Receiving new mercies every morning is different than stagnantly reliving regulations to achieve right living. 

“It’s the word of faith that welcomes God to go to work and set things right for us…

That’s it. You’re not “doing” anything; you’re simply calling out to God, trusting him to do it for you. That’s salvation. 

With your whole being you embrace God setting things right, and then you say it, right out loud: “God has set everything right between him and me!”

‭‭Romans‬ ‭10:9-10‬‬ MSG 

God has called you to live a different story than the one handed down to from your parents or the world. He has embraced you completely and holds nothing back from you.

He is asking for relationship and trust, in the small things as well as the really big things. He is persistent in pursuing you and everyday is a new day to begin again. 

Simply ask. 

Simply walk.

Simply receive.

Now walk. 

Say No

  

Real freedom isn’t saying yes to everything.

it means being able to say no.

No to the things that sabitoge your peace.

No to the things that undercutt your strength.

No to the thoughts that lead you to that dark place.

Saying “no” is a lot harder to say when you have used “yes” for so long to please the people around you.

“For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,” (Titus 2:11-13 NIV)

You are not hear to please the people around you. You have been set free to please God.

Saying yes to God sometimes means saying no to others.

Who do you need to say no to today?