Sunday, May 07, 2006

Earning God's Favor?

I laid awake at night deep in restless thought. My mind cluttered with the pressing needs and cares of this life. A mounting list of burdens stealing my joy and removing the daily satisfaction received from having a daily walk with the Lord. For a variety of reasons my mind was preoccupied with how to achieve God’s favor.

I had been working hard lately, doing extra things that I thought would make me more spiritual, a better Christian indeed. However, despite my best efforts I was struggling more than ever. Matter of fact, I was making a mess of things. And then it dawned on me. One of those crystal clear revelations that bring a sweeping wave of peace and reassurance over your mind and body.

I could never earn God’s favor. That is not what the Gospel is about. I already had God’s favor, despite myself. No matter how hard I tried, I could never earn it-but it was freely given to me, a sinner. What a comforting thought! Like a prodigal son, God sees me and is filled with compassion for me, he’s thrown the best robe over my shoulders, he’s put his ring on my hand, his sandals on my feet, and an incorruptible crown awaits me in heaven.

I have God’s favor, I just need to guard my heart and keep it pure. Then proceed forth in faith and run the race that God has laid out for me.

For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless. O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you. Psalm 84:11-12

But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you. For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield. Psalm 5:11-1

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