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Friday, April 13, 2012

Whet my appetite!

In my line of work, many things are kept as "confidential" - very limited access to the information.  Many times people want to "know" what we have access to, but we have been bound by rules of confidentiality to keep silent.  This is definitely the case with our message of hope and trust in Christ!  We have been given knowledge we are actually encouraged to share!


11-14 God's readiness to give and forgive is now public. Salvation's available for everyone! We're being shown how to turn our backs on a godless, indulgent life, and how to take on a God-filled, God-honoring life. This new life is starting right now, and is whetting our appetites for the glorious day when our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, appears. He offered himself as a sacrifice to free us from a dark, rebellious life into this good, pure life, making us a people he can be proud of, energetic in goodness.  
(Titus 2:11-14 The Message)


God's readiness to give and forgive - public knowledge - a thing to be proclaimed in both our words and actions!  He gives us salvation (freedom from the penalty of sin) and forgiveness (the ability to walk in release).  His readiness to give and forgive is something we display in our walk everyday.  


It is in the daily choices we make Christ's forgiveness becomes evident in our lives.  As we make solid choices, perhaps quite different from the selfish and self-damaging choices we used to make, there is evidence of his "giving" and "forgiving" within us.  He gives us the very strength to resist the pull to live as we please.  He forgives us the mess-ups along the way.  In it all, God's grace becomes the "public" evidence of his readiness to give and forgive.


Here's the place where the rubber meets the road - God is showing us how to live this life of freedom - we have the choice to receive his instruction or resist it.  We don't "get" how this whole "godliness" thing really translates into our lives the very first moment we ask God to take control of our lives (salvation).  It is over the course of walking it out with him choice by choice we become keenly aware of just how self-indulgent we have been in our choices and how very different it is to be turning our backs on these selfish choices.  In the evidence of making the better choices in our lives, we find out just how truly awesome this life with him is!


Even this small blessing of living choice by choice is nothing more than a whetting of our appetites for more of his grace, deeper intensity of his love within, and continually renewed hope for all walls of self-resistance to be fully destroyed.  When our appetites are truly whet, we are keenly aware of what it is which will satisfy them!  We become eager to pursue what gives us the finest pleasure of all!  


God's giving and forgiving are not without purpose.  He desires a people who live free lives.  Free from rebellion, unburdened from enslaving habits, and without "dark" places within.  It is a pure life he is creating with each choice we are afforded.  The moment we choose to take what he gives (grace), we start to make the correct choices in life.  Sometimes the very thing which frees us from rebellion is an extension of grace - grace to make the right choice in the right moment.  We are certainly unburdened from our enslaving habits by an action of grace - the cross.  


Whet spiritual appetites are stimulated by grace!  As grace is "devoured" in our lives, we seek it more and more - until it has done its full work within.  Are you in need of a little grace today?  Take it in!  Allow it to whet our appetite for more!  God's got a plan in grace - US!  Gotta love it!