The full extent of God’s grace

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By Dave Henning / September 26, 2020

“We can’t appreciate the full extent of God’s grace until we realize the full extent of our sin.  Then, and only then, can we chase the Wild Goose and His will for us with passion.”- Mark Batterson

“Peter replied, ‘Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about.’  Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed.  The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter.  Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: ‘Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.’  And he went outside and wept bitterly.”- Luke 22:60-61 (NIV)

As Mark Batterson continues Chapter 5 of Wild Goose Chase, he observes that he can’t help but wonder if one attains the heights of grace only after experiencing the depths of sin.  Hence, Pastor Batterson cites the words of C. S. Lewis.  In Mere Christianity, Lewis wrote:

“When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him.  When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less.”

Furthermore, Mark underscores, it’s much easier to act like a Christian than to react like one.  Because, like good actors, we’re adept at playing the part.  However, our actions reveal the true source of our identity.  Perhaps, the author suggests, that’s why Jesus spent a great deal of his teaching time on reconditioning reflexes.  For example:

  • Love your enemies.
  • Bless those who curse you.

In addition, Jesus taught us to turn the other cheek.  Mark like to think of Jesus’ teachings as spiritual aikido.  Where you absorb the sinful energy of someone else and convert it into a righteous response.

As a result, think of someone in your life who brings out your worst traits.  You react in ways you later regret.  Or that person gets on your nerves or under your skin.  Mark’s advice?  Pray for them.  For when you pray for the difficult people in your life, it changes the way you feel about them.

Today’s question: What Bible verses help you realize the full extent of God’s grace?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Absolutely unworthy – times we feel this way”

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Dave Henning

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