Grace and Heart

A friend recently made the following comment—Now that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are over, it makes me wonder how many across this great nation will arise and attend “Saving Grace Sunday”.  SGS is held at most churches near you. You don’t have to stand in line and it is not limited to the first 100 through the door. Your money is not necessary for the purchase as Jesus already paid the price. And yet it comes with a full eternal lifetime guarantee that is not sold separately. There are no rain checks as this special is actually available every day not just Sunday. 

I have not heard the expression “Saving Grace Sunday” before and it made me start thinking about our (my) priorities as Christians. It is increasingly easy to get distracted and lose sight of our spiritual goal, which is eternal life with God in heaven.

What about “saving grace”? Is it something we earn, if we do enough good works will we get it? No!! For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Eph 2:8-10

And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Heb 11:6

Paul said this to the Corinthians and it is for us as well —- As God’s fellow workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain. For he says, “In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation. 2 Cor 6:1-2

Everything we do is a ‘heart’ matter. Matt 22:37-39 “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” We often do many things out of habit, without much thought or feeling, including our religious practices.

 The following is from my daily devotional book “Jesus Calling”. It reminds me of God’s grace as well as reminding me that God truly wants us to remain close to him; with our hearts and not with emotionless habits or traditions.

 STAY EVER CLOSE TO ME, and you will not deviate from the path I have prepared for you. This is the most efficient way to stay on track; it is also the most enjoyable way. Men tend to multiply duties in their observance of religion. This practice enables them to give Me money, time and work without yielding up to Me what I desire…their hearts. Rules can be observed mechanically. Once they become habitual, they can be followed with minimal effort and almost no thought. These habit-forming rules provide a false sense of security, lulling the soul into a comatose condition.

 What I search for in My children is an awakened soul that thrills to the Joy of My Presence! I created mankind to glorify Me and enjoy Me forever. I provide the Joy’ your part is to glorify Me by living close to Me.
Deuteronomy 6:5; Colossians 3:23; Psalm 16:11

 I have found myself from time to time doing things out of habit; going through the motions. When this happens I began to feel discontent and restless and most of all empty. It is then I realize I have not stayed close to God. I remember the following and I pray it to God…Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.  Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.  Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Psalm 51:10-12

4 comments for “Grace and Heart

  1. December 23, 2010 at 8:29 pm

    Sorry to be this long checking in on you … it’s been busy. I’ve not heard that term either, but I like it. Will we ever really get excited about our salvation by faith to the degree we do religious holidays?

  2. Karla
    December 14, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    Good to hear of your thoughts again. I too realize that when I am not “drawing near to God” that I have a tendency to not count my blessings, not be as thankful, not be as likely to feel His arms around me, and not even think of the huge benefit of His Saving Grace every day. Thanks for making me think more about His Saving Grace.
    Love you,

    Thank you Karla! I love you too and hope to see you soon. 🙂

  3. December 12, 2010 at 10:44 pm

    Very good post to call our attention to is important and enduring. Those Black Friday deals will be forgotten; God’s salvation never will. Good article.

    Thank you Warren and thanks for stopping by.

  4. Meowmix
    December 9, 2010 at 10:11 am

    “Men tend to multiply duties in their observance of religion. This practice enables them to give Me money, time and work without yielding up to Me what I desire…their hearts.”

    How very true and easy it is to fall into this frame of mind. If I’m doing all the right thins, then my soul is fine. Brings us to 1 Cor. 13 – “….if you even give your body to be burned and have not love, it profits you nothing.”

    This devotional book has helped me in a lot of ways, Janice. I thank you again for sending me one. Have you noticed that the whole thread throughout has been thankfulness and staying close to Him? I never thought about being thankful in that way. That thankfulness would bring me into closer communion with Him.

    Good post, and glad to see you in print!

    Thank you Judy, sorry I’m so late in replying. I’m very glad you are enjoying the book. I LOVE mine!

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