Tag Archives: Cru
There’s this stubborn uncomfortable thing about grace though. Yes it’s free in that it is a gift to the one who receives it, but it is costly to the one who gives it. As the recipient of grace, I see its cost, and I can’t help but be changed by it.
In the last two years, I have learned that I must talk about ideas and doctrine and beliefs, but I must talk about them in the context of my own story. For a person to want the Gospel, he must see how it’s relevant. When it comes down to it, if I am to be on mission I must be willing to be vulnerable.
There’s a story about G. K. Chesterton, a Christian Englishman and writer from the 19th Century. In response to an article in the newspaper which finished with the question, “What’s wrong with the world?”, Chesterton wrote a letter to the editor which said simply, “I am.” I identify with that. I am more often than I care to admit part of the problem. I’m frequently one of the ones in the way of Dr. King’s dream becoming a reality.
Perhaps, Luke structures the end of his narrative on the explosive beginning of the church with this slow-moving court drama to call his readers like Paul to engage the power structures of their day with the Gospel. Perhaps, Luke intends to call his readers to love those around them enough to speak the truth in grace.
Despite the fact that life got harder, that my cares were mounting, I hadn’t lost the respect of others around me. No, I had the respect of all those who mattered in my life. But . . . I wasn’t satisfied. It wasn’t enough. I came to find out I needed love more than respect. I had to risk losing respect to take a step closer to intimacy.
Now, I believe that such longing for our final home, the fully realized Kingdom of God, is a good thing. However, I know I can be guilty of forgetting that God is in the business of redemption even now.
Sure, I have a logical reasons behind my faith but they are not primary. The Gospel story of Divine Love creating, enjoying, mourning, intervening, self-sacrificing, redeeming, and restoring is so beautiful and so wholly other from all that I can imagine that I must believe it is true.
As I learn to embrace my rather obvious limits, my heart is beginning to embrace my deeper limits. I begin to accept myself as I am not as I portray myself to be. That’s freedom. That’s the sweet spot.
Faith is not the absence of doubt. It’s the volitional rejection of doubt’s paralysis in order to take one step further into trust. Faith is trusting that there’s a bigger story than what I can see.
We love others because it is the effect of His transforming love already given to us. His Love powers ours. It cannot be any other way.