Your Grace

by Beth Fore

“Three times I pleaded with
the Lord to take it away from
me.  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.
That is why, for Christ’s sake,
I delight in weaknesses, in
insults, in hardships, in
persecutions, in difficulties.
For when I am weak, then
I am strong.”

(2 Corinthians 12:8-10 NIV)

Your Grace

Because of Your grace, Lord,
I am free.
I’m no longer blind, Lord,
now I see.

Because of Your grace, Lord,
I am forgiven.
My sins are washed away, Lord,
Christ has risen.

Because of Your grace, Lord,
I am blessed.
I’m no longer anxious, Lord,
in You I find rest.

Because of Your grace, Lord,
I am saved.
I’m sanctified by Your holiness
in which I am bathed.

Because of Your grace, Lord,
I have less fear.
I can feel Your presence, Lord,
You are always here.

Because of Your grace, Lord,
I do believe . . .
that Your gift of eternal life
I will receive.

by Beth Fore

*God sometimes allows his children to have visions, dreams, and unique encounters with heavenly beings to see and understand Him more clearly.

That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.”   (2 Cor. 12:10 NIV)

In the first part of 2 Corinthians 12, Paul talks about his encounter with God.  He was blinded on the road to Damascus and God appeared to him.  Paul tells us that he was caught up into paradise where he heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell.  Paul was given an unusual encounter with God and things that happen in the heavenly places.  We can only imagine what these things might have been; but we do know that the things Paul experienced transformed him into one of the most devoted and committed apostles of Jesus Christ.

These experiences would likely cause most men to boast of this special honor and privilege; and that is likely true of Paul, also.  So, Paul tells us that he was given a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment him and prevent him from being conceited and boastful because of the things that had been revealed to him.  Like Paul, we can become boastful and proud sometimes when we think God has given us a special calling, or a spiritual gift.  God will also find a way to humble us when we become arrogant and think we are responsible for these gifts.

*God does not always choose to remove the problems, the pain, or the suffering from our lives even though we may ask Him to do so frequently in our prayers.  He does, however, promise us that He will be with us and give us the grace and strength to overcome these difficulties.

Paul pleaded with God and asked Him three times to remove this thorn.  God did not remove the thorn from Paul, but He did say, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”  As Christians, we have the privilege of praying to God about all of our concerns.  Like Paul, we can ask God to remove things from our lives which cause us pain and suffering.  Also, like Paul, God may choose not to remove these things because they can help us grow and mature in Him.

Paul matured and grew in Christ through his thorn in the flesh.  He was able to boast about his weaknesses because Christ’s power and grace were given to him when he was too weak to take care of himself.  Christians are strong when they understand that God is always with them, and God will be strong for them whenever they need His strength.

APPLICATIONS

  1. Think of a time when you asked God repeatedly to remove some hurt, suffering, or hardship from your life.  Did He remove it?  If not, can you now see how His allowing you to have the problem actually caused you to be a more mature Christian?
  2. God’s grace is His free gift to us.  We do not deserve it; we do not earn it; we cannot work hard enough to gain it.  How should God’s gift of grace eliminate all conceit and boasting in our lives?
  3. Choose one of the stanzas of the poem, and think about how God’s grace affects your life.  Then write another stanza of your own that applies specifically to you personally.  You do not have to use rhyming words.
  4. Say Paul’s words aloud, “For when I am weak, then I am strong.”  Explain what these words mean to you.

If you want to learn more about what it means to be a Christian or to become a Christian, click this link: https://woww.newlifebehavior.org/what-it-means-to-follow-jesus-how-to-become-a-christian/ If you have questions, please send us an email at nlbiministry@gmail.com.

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