Friday, May 11, 2012

Grace: A Broken & Beautiful Accounting

Graphs help track growth.  Pie charts help compare one slice of "something" against another.  We love to measure and compare. Seeing results measured out like this gives a sense of accomplishment.

Grace is a broken accounting system.  No pie chart can effectively shows grace's work.

Looking at grace - it's ridiculously beautiful though!

According to the bible, when God looks at me, my life-graph doesn't rise and fall according to my righteousness because God sees Christ when he looks at me, therefore, my "numbers" couldn't be better!  Don't get me wrong here, I do NOT want to take advantage of God's grace by living like a hellion and thumbing my nose at his generous kindness to me.  He deserves way better than that! Yet, despite his holiness, he allows me to approach his throne boldly, protected and loved, bought and paid for under the name of Jesus Christ.

Some may say, "How arrogant of you to think you can approach a Holy God with such confidence!"  Remember though, it was HIM who tore the curtain! He opened the Way to his throne through Jesus.  With humility and thankfulness, I approach, but also with confidence. He loves me...and I unabashedly go to him as my Heavenly Father, knowing he will not send me away.  That's amazing! Amazing Grace!

Grace didn't only show up when Jesus came.  We see God's grace in the Old Testament, too.  The story of Noah is one such example.  Yes, we see his wrath poured out, but desiring than none should perish if they'd turn back to him, he also gave mercy and grace - in the form of an ark.  This is an excerpt from something I wrote a few years back.

I just realized the other day that God waited 100 years for Noah to build the ark...only to save EIGHT people in the end.  EIGHT!!!  This is significant to me in light of what I was thinking about yesterday. We are all about results and performance as people. We generally run life like a business. If we aren't getting the results we think we should be getting, we cut the funding, by George! But God doesn't work that way. The thing that blows my mind about the story of Noah is that God already knew how many were going to get in the ark. It wasn't as if the day of the flood came and God sat there, scratching his head saying, "Oh rats! Noah, I had you make this ark ginormous, and look...nobody is showing up. What a waste of time!" Nope. He told him to build the ark, then waited patiently, allowing only eight little people to board. Now that's kindness!  That's mercy. God's not into showing off his most recent stats. He's into loving people. That's the way it was from the beginning and the way it is now. EIGHT people saved in a hundred years time?  Wow! That's not a good return on His investment according to the numbers. Or then again...maybe it was a great return- according to grace.

Isn't our God incredible?  How do we not fall head over heals in love with such a God?  

Lord, thank you for not loving me based on my performance because I know I would fall short.  If my life was recorded and measured according to a graph, it would not be impressive at all. Thank you for allowing me to take on the name and the beautiful results of Jesus as my own!  You truly are amazing and I love you!  May my life bring you the glory you deserve!

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