PUBLISHED: January 14, 2019 • 3 minute read
Most believers understand that they are saved by God’s grace. They know that this grace cannot be earned because it is God’s free gift of salvation.
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9
This is entirely accurate, but let us remember that grace does not stop when a person is saved.
Grace is God’s gift of enabling power that allows us to accomplish the entirety of His will.
Grace to Serve God Acceptably
"Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.” Hebrews 12:28
“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his glory and goodness.” 2 Peter 1:3
These verses show us that we serve God acceptably with reverence by His grace and not by our ability.
“For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.” Romans 7:18
We have no power in our own strength to obey God and live righteously before Him. If we could do this by ourselves, we would have no need for grace and the cross of Christ would be for nothing.
Grace to Endure Trials
“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.” 2 Corinthians 12:9
In 2 Corinthians 12, Paul is pleading with the Lord to take away something that is causing him pain and anxiety, the “thorn in his flesh.” God responds not by removing the trial, but by showing him that His grace (power) will give him the strength to endure it.
When it is God’s will for us to suffer all kinds of trials so that our faith may be refined, He will always give us the power to endure them with purpose as we know that they lead to eternal victory.
This is something that really resonates with me. I was born premature and as a result I am visually impaired. There are a lot of challenges that come with having a disability and at times I feel very overwhelmed and broken. Yet in all these things I know the secret to overcoming and enduring the trials that I face is that, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
This verse means that we can endure every situation through Christ’s strength. God’s grace will sustain us through every circumstance. When we are weak we are truly strong, because our strength is found not in ourselves, but rather it is found in the Source of Strength.
Grace to Know God
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
“Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the one true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” John 17:3
The crux of God’s will for us is to know Him intimately. This is the reason God sent His Son to die on the cross. It is His grace that saves us, empowers us to live as He does, and ultimately know Him intimately.
How to Receive Grace
As with salvation, God’s grace is received through faith. It is a gift, and all we have to do is ask for it. When we ask, we must believe that we will receive it as long as it is in accordance with His will. In order to do this, we must first understand that we are called to continually rely and depend on God in our everyday lives. We will not see the purpose of needing His grace until we recognize that we cannot do this life on our own.
“But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6
God gives His grace to those who know they need it. True strength is found in the admission of our weaknesses, for only then can we rise above them by God’s power.