DayBreaks for 05/01/13 – Tireless Sin, Tireless Grace
NOTE: I am on a missions trip/internship to Africa and will be gone until 5/25. Please pray for God’s work to go forth mightily, for protection for myself and those with whom I will be working, and for my wife in my absence! Thank you…I cherish your prayers! You will be receiving DayBreaks as usual (from the archive) until I’ve returned.
Ephesians 2:4-7 (ESV) – But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved — 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
World magazine included an article by Andree Seu on March 30, 2002 in which she described a situation common to all of us: the lure of temptation and how we give in to it. Let me share part of that article with you:
“My usual way with temptation is to succumb and then repent. I once devoured, in one frenzied gulp, the remaining torso of my son’s solid chocolate bunny, so that it would stop tempting me from its green fiberfill next on the kitchen counter. Immediately there was much relief and not a little guilt. A Pyrrhic victory.
“All this is a workable enough arrangement much of the time – you know: my tireless sin, God’s tireless grace. But every now and then (notably on the occasions that I am the bitten rather than the biter) I get discouraged and cynical about the reality of this thing we call the Christian life. Has the emperor any clothes?
“We believe in forgiveness – until there’s someone to forgive. We subscribe to the unity of the saints – until the least little things ruffles it. We possess faith – until some garden variety challenge calls for it. We extol patience – but woe to the person who crosses us twice. We have basically two settings in relationships: flattery or disdain, hardly any middle ground. We do a hundred “good deeds”, then refuse the one that goes against our natural inclination. We keep a tight rein on our tongues until the first feeble tug of gossip pries it loose.
“What opportunity is lost when I fail to avail myself of the one thing that temptation is good for! For in God’s way of alchemizing Satan’s curses to our blessing, is not temptation the crucible in which suffering undergoes the heat and calcinations that yields that rare and precious commodity, courage?”
There is a lot of truth in Ms. Seu’s observations of our behavior. Our sinful tendencies are tireless – they knock on the door of our imaginations and tempt us with tasty, yet devilish, delicacies. And how about my willingness to forgive? It’s easy to say that I’m willing to forgive – until someone really hurts ME instead of someone I don’t care about. But when it gets personal, well, then it becomes an entirely different ballgame.
I’ve learned that sin is tireless sin my life. Satan never seems to get tired of tempting me. If Satan gets joy out of my sinning, he must be a very happy “person”. That is, until the grace of God enters the picture. Because God’s grace is tireless, too. God is the most forgiving “Being” that has ever existed. It is good to remember God’s wrath, anger and hatred for sin – but never let us overlook the magnitude of His grace that extends towards us!
Copyright 2002 by Galen C. Dalrymple. ><}}}”>
Copyright 2013 by Galen C. Dalrymple.
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