“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” Ephesians 2:13
Grace, grace, God’s grace. Does it ever amaze you? Does it ever overwhelm you? Does it ever stop you dead in your tracks? Unmerited favor, getting what you don’t deserve. Grace.
Grace has been on my mind constantly these past few days. I can’t stop thinking about it. The fact that there is nothing I could do on my own to save myself is overwhelming on its own. But then, there’s grace. I owed a debt I could not pay, so Christ paid a debt that He did not owe. My sin, your sin, all sin was atoned for on the cross of Christ, and the sacrifice was beautifully made complete with Christ’s dying words, “It is finished.”
So, as I wrestle with grace and can’t stop thinking about the ocean of grace that I now reside in, I’m once again overwhelmed at the thought that it’s not about what I’ve done (my ugly past) or what I can do (the good works of my future); it’s all about what Christ has already done. Y’all, it is finished. There remains no need for striving. We can stop trying to be good enough, look good enough, and become good enough. The blood of Christ makes us new, and we stand before God as holy, righteous, and redeemed.
I was once far away, alienated from God in my sin, and lost in darkness. But then, there was grace. A free gift extended to me. I couldn’t do anything to earn it. I couldn’t do anything to deserve it. I just had to receive it. The work was already done. The sacrifice was sufficient on the cross. I just had to receive it.
Because I was once far away and lost in my waywardness, constantly bent on pleasing myself and others instead of pleasing God, the love of God rushed to me. God’s love rescued me. His mercy called out to me. His grace beckoned me. His forgiveness covered me.
Now I have been brought near – near to the heart of God, surrounded and indwelt by His presence, clothed in His righteousness. Not because of anything I’ve done. Not because I’m a good person or somehow better than the next. Not because I can successfully check off of my list countless good deeds, ordinances, or rituals. Not because another person deems me good or holy. But because of His work on the cross alone. I stand free from condemnation, free from guilt and shame, and free from the chains of sin that once bound me. It is Christ in me, the hope of glory. It’s all because of Jesus. I was once far away, but now I’ve been brought near. Thank you Jesus for the cross!