The cross of Christ shines

By Dave Henning / January 1, 2021

“The cross of Christ shines through each of the four sacred gifts (value, strength, grace, joy) of our God-given callings.  We all stand equally condemned under God’s righteous Law, yet equally forgiven and redeemed by His grace.  The cross is the lens through which I must interpret every human interaction and relationship.”- Rev. Jeffrey Leininger

“Only in Jesus Christ are we one; only through Him are we bound together.  He remains the one and only mediator throughout eternity.”- Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together

As Rev. Jeffrey Leininger continues Chapter 5 of Callings for Life, he stresses that we should interpret our vocations as God-given.  As a result, four sacred gifts follow.  These gifts manifest themselves when we, through the power of the Holy Spirit, regard our vocations as coming from God’s hand.

1.  Value.  Those you encounter daily possess God-given values.  Consequently, no matter who the people are, you cannot simply dismiss them as inconvenient or insignificant.  Because God’s directed your paths to cross.  Thus, your calling to serve them comes from God.

 2.  Strength.  We find many of our God-given callings challenging.  Therefore, God promises to give us the strength to fulfill them.  Also, since these callings come from Him, we can rest assured that His strength accompanies us.

3.  Grace.  When we fail, we receive God’s assurance of grace.  The fact that we follow God-given (rather than self-chosen) callings multiplies and amplifies the intensity of our failures.  The author adds:

“Indeed, the more we grow in awareness of God’s callings upon us, the more sin we will recognize.  This is why a deeper awareness of the God-givenness of life must always be accompanied by  an even deeper awareness of His grace.”

4.  Joy.  Finally, our God-given callings bring us true joy not found in self-chosen callings.   Hence, joy abounds as we fulfill those callings.  For we know that our heavenly Father has asked us to be faithful.

Today’s question: How do you see that the cross of Christ shines through each of the four sacred gifts?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “The heart of God revealed in Jesus’s work”

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Dave Henning

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