Accept you’re accepted

Galatians 2:1-10

Religion says, ‘I obey; therefore I am accepted.’ Christianity says, ‘I’m accepted, therefore I obey.’ That’s a quote from an influential pastor that helps illustrate the notion of grace in Jesus.

But you can take it from me as a pastor. I’ve heard people voice the way we mix up grace. Let’s take church attendance, for example.

People have asked me to pray for them because they were sure God wouldn’t hear them. Why? Because they hadn’t been to church in a while. Now, is worship at the core of who we are as God’s people? Yes. Does God want you to know the joy and connection of a church family. Of course! Does God shun you because you haven’t? Of course not! That’s a mix up.

We could unpack other examples related to giving, serving and praying. They’d all sound quite similar. And they’d all show the mix up we often make.

We don’t do things to get God to hear or see us. Instead, God has shown us eternal love and sent Jesus to get our attention! To show us what our lives can be as a result of God’s love. To help us discover what freedom in Christ means. To empower us to break the chains of wickedness, to untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and tear off every yoke (Isaiah 58:6).

That tells us we’re already accepted by God. Church attendance, and anything else we might do for God, is a response. So, it bears repeated repetition: Christ is enough. You can’t add to what God has already done in Jesus.

When you pray today, let the reality of Christ’s sacrifice set in your soul. Let it delight your heart’s imagination of what life can be. It’ll show you the person of Jesus. He lived and loved. He served and healed. And, through the Holy Spirit, today, he still saves.

Stay blessed…john

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John Fletcher

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