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Saturday, March 26, 2016

Between the Cross & the Resurrection

Tomorrow is the celebrated anniversary of God's magnum opus, The Resurrection. The day God, in human form, triumphed over death to save us. Just yesterday was the celebrated anniversary of greatest paradox in history. The crucifixion of Christ. Ironically, the crucifixion is simultaneously man's greatest injustice and only hope for redemption. Here were are, stuck in between these two monumental events. I'm guessing, the disciples must have felt Satan might be winning on the day before that first Easter. Sometimes, I feel like Satan is running amuck in between the moments God shows off in my life. As if , I'm in between two great seasons. One that already happened and one that is coming. It's those days, when I'm forced to "wait upon The Lord ", I meditate the most.  Unlike the disciples, we have the luxury of knowing Sunday is coming and grace will abound. I've learned one simple truth that gets me through those moments between God showing off. The truth is God is always showing off. It just takes a little more effort to miss it sometimes.   I'm somewhat addicted to excitement.  There's nothing I enjoy more than being in a moment when we are reaping a harvest for His kingdom or witnessing some other a supernatural event where God pours out His providential grace in provision. Even when life seems mundane and boring, I remind myself God is always awesome . His plan is perfect, and will work together for our good. Those moments, when it's the hardest to see, I focus on the mysterious things about God.  Today, the day before Easter, above all days, I reflect on the mystery of God's grace.

Grace is given at the expense of Jesus and is the costliest gift we can receive. By it's very definition, it is unattainable based upon merit or ability. Grace, so intricate in detail, God laid it out from the foundation of the world. So expensive, it cost the life of the creator of the universe. So perfect, its application determines the eternal destination of the soul.
 It's almost laughable reading the futile attempts of learned men describe how to receive it. Philosophical debates have been waged on how, when, and who can get it. Churches, have split over whether or not you can keep it, or loose it, in an endeavor to comprehend what is written about it. A man could loose his sanity trying to figure out grace.

I don't know which is a worse tragedy,  to over complicate salvation to the extent it appears impossible to receive, or to reduce and simplify it to a mere one time, once said, fix all, prayer. Both distort grace. It really comes down to one question. Can we be true believers in Christ, unless we are Christ followers? Truth be told, grace is a paradoxical as the cross. Can someone truely believe in Christ and not follow Him?

Jesus tells us,
"For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it." Luke 9: 24

I'm convinced many people know about grace but just do not want it. It's simple really, they know you can't have grace and be left unchanged. Seduced by this life, and the illusion of feeling in control, I've been there. It's overrated. If sanctity of life applies to this life, how much more to our spiritual life since we must loose one to save the other?  The more I let go of this life, the more alive I feel.  Every moment takes me closer to heaven and seeing Jesus. 

People, afraid of grace, feel they are captain of their own ships enjoying smooth sailing. They are destined to sink, unless, they abandon ship. Destined to drown, unless, Christ pulls them from a would be watery grave.

Grace tends to navigate her ship to rougher waters. She does not sail, for her captives, now slaves of Christ, man the oars. Christ followers cannot self navigate, for Christ is the way. Christ steers the ship, and we should row aimlessly comforted knowing, not only the ship, but the passengers, and even the sea, belong to Jesus. I don't know exactly how I got chained to this oar in the galley of this ship. I'm just glad to be here and hope I get to see you.

It is my prayer you would become a committed follower of Christ. Happy Easter.

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