tommy olmsted 2

GRACE

TOMMY OLMSTED

2 Corinthians 12:9

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

Growing up in the Church, I heard the word “grace” a lot. I always knew it must have been something good because it came from Jesus. However, it honestly just became another church word I used in the presence of other Christians because it sounded right. I did not understand grace.

I know I still have a lot to learn about grace, but I remember so clearly the moment I truly started to understand grace for the first time. I found myself feeling so guilty for something I did that I knew would hurt someone I cared about and the heart of Jesus. As I spent time confessing to God, I wanted so badly for Him to confirm the bad feelings I had about myself. I was not ready to give myself grace, so I sure did not want it from those whom I had hurt. I knew what I deserved and it was not what I was given.

Sin is so easily watered down in our lives. I know I sometimes spend more time trying to justify my sins than I do trying to turn away from them. However, the Bible says “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23), so it is a very big deal. God did not want to leave us to suffer the consequences of our sin. Instead, His love draws Him to offer us grace–a gift we do not deserve in place of the punishment we do deserve. When we understand the weight of our sin, we can see more clearly the beauty of grace. Romans 6:23 continues on to say, “but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” We get a beautiful gift, one that is more than enough to cover all we have done. There are no limits to what God can save us from and forgive us for through His grace.

A wise professor once told me, “When you hold on to the sins you have committed without allowing God to heal or forgive you, it is as though you are looking Jesus in the face and telling Him that His death on the cross was not good enough for you.” As Paul points out in his letter to the Corinthians, God’s grace is more than enough for each of us. We do not have to be ashamed of our weaknesses and our mistakes because God’s hands are at work in every situation. Let your life be full of His grace as you walk in His freedom!

QUESTION 1. What sins are you currently holding on to and are not able to forgive yourself for?
QUESTION 2. What does it mean to you for God’s grace to be enough for you?
CHALLENGE: Turn away from the sins in your life and run straight into the gracious arms of Jesus.