Monday, August 20, 2012
My youngest child sometimes uses the expression: "You're getting up in my grill".
I think I know what he means.
Brother Tom spoke it from the pulpit yesterday and Sister Cindy sang it. The book, The Discipline of Grace by Jeffrey Bridges sorts it out this morning and the Book of Romans, chapter 8 to be specific, takes the cake. (Enoch read it in church from The Message version and it was like I was hearing it all over again for the first time...) I am undone and bewildered once more by the truth of the gospel. The plain truth is this: Jesus Christ died to save sinners…not just sinners, but this sinner, with a reckless compassion and an audacious grace. And what’s more, what’s rash and northeast-blizzard wild is that my performance has nothing to do with the matter. On my most wretched, worldly, ugly days that grace abounds as much as on the days I think myself spiritual.
Oh, how we world weary, self weary folks need the infusion of this bedrock foundation while we walk, climb or crawl the pilgrim road! It is only trust in this unmoving love that can change us. Only here, in the place of the finished work, where we are not judged, but loved…only here can we change. Not by striving. Not by being especially good today. But by believing. And by receiving, every day, the gift of grace.
So I’m posting this today because The Great One brought His gospel around to me from so many directions it got funny. I am the proverbial barn door that simply can’t be missed. I, a Christian for almost 27 years, am again rebooted to the truth that set me free…and I require this ridiculous repetition to recall (how’s that for alliteration) that it’s the only truth that will keep me free. And I thought maybe there was someone out there who needed to be reminded too. Simply. Without fanfare. (Except the reality of this should bring in the marching bands from the billions of galaxies in the known universe.)
“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus…”
Breathe some of that fresh air…let that get up in your grill...and keep climbing.
Thank you Tom, Cindy, Enoch, Mr. Bridges, dear Apostle Paul….
Thank you Jesus. I can never pay the debt. And you would never ask me to. That’s the mind blowing gospel.
Your friend on the pilgrim road,