Tag Archives: God’s grace

“Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you, who walk in the light of your presence, Lord.  They rejoice in your name all day long; they celebrate your righteousness.  For you are their glory and strength, and by your favor you exalt our horn.”  (Psalm 89:15-17, NIV)

Learning to “acclaim” the Lord requires both discipline and practice.

Discipline, because it is something that is contrary to our ego-centric selves.  Practice, because it is only through repetition that it becomes our nature to give God the glory that is rightfully His.

In life, we take so much for granted.  If we only thought for 60 seconds of all of the things that God gives us as a matter of His grace: The air we breathe; the water we drink; the food we eat; longevity; the love of our family members; the fidelity of our friends. . ., we would rejoice in His “name all day long.”

As it is, these simple gifts are seldom noticed, until we are at risk of losing them; or, until we have begun to “walk in the light of [His] presence.”

As large as the blessing may be in the receipt of God’s gifts; a larger blessing is knowing that God’s reservoir of grace is inexhaustible.  – Luther

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“One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the Lord; and He will repay him for his good deed.  (Proverbs 19:17, NASB)

We would never think it necessary to lend money to Warren Buffet or to Bill Gates.  Each is worth billions of dollars and, I presume, have few (if any) creditors.

God has more than Gates and Buffet — combined!  The scripture tells us that when we are gracious to the pauper, we are lending to God — and God will repay us — one and all — for our good deed.

Imagine what it must feel like to be a creditor of the Almighty.  Imagine what it must feel like to receive His re-payment.  We can experience both every time we are gracious to the lost, the last, and the least among us.  – Luther

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“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”  (Proverbs 27:17, NIV)

In the scriptures, there are verses and passages that are smooth and gentle — but this isn’t one of them.

In our kitchen are knives that I sharpen before each use; they don’t work well otherwise. The act of sharpening the edge requires metal on metal, and at the end of it, neither the sharpening steel nor the knife are the same.  The former fulfills purpose in the process, and sacrifices tiny filings of itself; the latter is made adequate for its tasks as it, too, sacrifices tiny filings of itself in the process.

There are people whose interactions with us are anything but smooth and gentle.  Sometimes we avoid such situations.  Sometimes we resent having allowed such situations to occur.  Occasionally, we see beyond the irritation and the pain inherent in such interactions to a benefit that could not have occurred otherwise.

Know that God is at work in each of your daily interactions with others.  Sometimes you are the knife; sometimes you are the sharpening steel.  Each fulfills its purpose when placed in the hand of God.  – Luther

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