“Do not say in your heart, after the LORD your God has thrust them out before you, ‘It is because of my righteousness that the LORD has brought me in to possess this land,’ whereas it is because of the wickedness of these nations that the LORD is driving them out before you.”
The above verse comes from a passage where Moses is addressing the Israelites before they enter the Promised Land. He warns them not to be prideful by believing that God is blessing them because they deserve it. He later reminds them of their shortcomings and reasons for wandering in the wilderness for forty years. Moses is warning the people to be humble and to acknowledge the grace of God.
I have fallen into this trap of believing that my actions or my “righteousness” should earn me favor with God. Because I seek to follow Him, He should bless me more than those who don’t even try to please Him. This leads me to disappointment, anger towards God, and jealousy.
I am learning to follow God, not to receive His blessings, but because I love Him and am thankful for His grace and provision. Then when God does bless me, I am not filled with pride but gratitude. Instead of believing that I have earned what I got, I acknowledge that God chose to bless me because of His abundant grace. God blesses us because He loves us and is a good Father, not because we have earned His blessings.
So what do we do when we don’t see God’s blessings? We continue being faithful. We continue seeking God. We keep asking, seeking, and knocking knowing that our Father has not and will not forsake us. The trials we face teach us discipline, humility, patience, and build character. The trials prepare us for the future God has for us. Perhaps that is why James says to rejoice during trials.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
The trials we face are still filled with God’s grace and His presence. If this wasn’t true, how could we consider it “pure joy”? Let’s not confuse joy with happiness. Joy comes from God’s presence and happiness is a result of our circumstances. We may not be happy about what we are going through but we can still rest in the joy of our Father’s presence as we trust Him to work everything out for our good.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose.”
No matter what mountaintops or valleys we are walking through, we know that God’s grace covers us and that He is working for our good. The condition is to walk according to His purposes for us (not in someone else’s purpose) and to love God. Loving God and walking with Him. These two keys will keep us heading in the right direction.
When we step away from God, we remove ourselves from His provision and grace. Thankfully, we can always turn back to God and He will ALWAYS welcome us back into His presence and cover us with His unending, never-failing grace and love.
“Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, that He may have compassion on him and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”
By the grace of God, we are pardoned for all our sins and transgressions. By the grace of God we are blessed. By the grace of God we persevere through every trial. By the grace of God we live abundant lives.
Let’s step into God’s grace today with humility, thanksgiving, and repentance. By the grace of God, we are always welcome Home.
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I want to follow Jesus! How do I get started?
“This is how we know that we live in Him and He in us: He has given us of His Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God.
1 John 4:13-15
If you are ready to join the family of God, simply believe and ask. You can choose your own words or pray the prayer below. God hears your heart, simply confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and let the Spirit lead you.
“Father, I want to be yours. Forgive me of my sins. I believe that you sent Your Son, Jesus Christ, to die in my place. I accept Jesus as my Lord and Savior and thank you for the gift of salvation through Him. I invite the Holy Spirit into my heart and surrender my life to You. In Jesus name, Amen.”
Feel free to spend time just talking to God and sharing your heart with Him. Let Him speak to you and listen as He leads you forward into new life. Welcome to the family.
Need to talk or have questions? Feel free to reach out and contact me.