Growing Down: Gods Grace, in Spite of Myself

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  1. Bob Hoekstra :: The Grace of God
  2. Growing Down : Gods Grace, in Spite of Myself by Sarah Horner Wetzel -
  3. Can you be ‘saved’ and not grow? (Justification vs Sanctification)
  4. When God's Timing Is Taking Too Long

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Bob Hoekstra :: The Grace of God

As a lifelong Christian, Sarah Wetzel tried everything she knew to grow holier and happier. But as a young mom laboring alongside her missionary husband high in the Andes Mountains, she came to the painful realization that her spiritual "fruit basket" was still empty and her faith was dying on the vine.

Where is the peace, love, and joy? Where are the souls won for Christ? Why am I entertaining sinful thoughts? Sarah railed against God and tried to become an agnostic. But at critical times, God seemed to deposit precisely the right book into Sarah's hands. She gleaned wisdom from Scripture and from the timeless biographies of heroes and heroines of the faith, including Keith Green, Isobel Kuhn, Joni Eareckson Tada, and Catherine Marshall, and came to understand God's upside-down-and-backward plan for her spiritual growth: "He wants me to see the truth about myself, not to depress me, only to show me the truth about Jesus.

The longer I live, the more of my sin I see, and the greater is my love and appreciation for Jesus. However, you are stuck in a world that is constantly being negatively effected by our own fractured understanding of our world, ourselves, and our creator because of sin.

Most people will be completely blind to these realities, but God is consistently trying to point you to a better way of life with Him through the Holy Spirit. The sun will be brighter, your relationships will be deeper, your outlook will be more hopeful, your failures will sting less, your victories will be more sweet, and your outlook will be more positive. As you learn through the Bible what God has been doing since creation and how we can live according to His ways, we are motivated to do what He says.

To celebrate new realities, new victories, new hope, new happiness, and new perspectives. Walking with Christ is the highlight of our lives that makes everything else brighter, more full, and more exciting until one day, our ultimate hope will be realized…. Life on this earth will end and we will continue to live with Christ forever, apart from all of the muck and nastiness of sin that we have endured until that point.

So, you see, a desire to be saved without any change in us can not really be the gospel. Justification is an important and definable moment on the journey of sanctification. But what we are focused on is the process, the long haul, the adventure…the journey, not the moment that it all began. I agree with you in principle, but I find it much harder to define in practice.

I was raised in a Christian home. I prayed to accept Christ at 6 years old. When I was 12 I started attending church regularly, and there did seem to be a genuine hunger for Christ and the word of God.

Put Yourself in the Path of God’s Grace

It really freaked me out. Not enough to make me stop watching questionable movies, but enough to make me question my salvation when I did. For example, I remember a really sweet moment when I had been mad at my friend because I felt ignored, and I felt like the Lord gently corrected me and showed me that I was being selfish. The moment I repented, it was like a weight was lifted off me.

Now, I would gladly give up much of my entertainment to follow Christ. Could it be possible that I was truly growing in some areas, but become more carnal in others? Could it be possible that I was having an overreaction to condemning preaching. Was I just a deceived false convert? Daniel, what a beautiful picture of sanctification and I agree, it is much easier to discuss in principle that define in practice.

I think that is a good thing. You describe the intent of what I was hoping to write about.

In fact, sometimes it gets more intense. What we do with sin matters, though.

I am glad to say that I am farther along this path after over 30 years of being a Christian. The difference is that we are striving to become more like Christ. That is really the intent of this post. Are we striving to become more like Christ or have we prayed a prayer of salvation and rarely think another thing about it. But we also noted that the law of God has the ability to reveal our need, make us accountable before God, and alert us to sin's reality and the fact that we are sinners.

And then the law can tutor us to the Lord Jesus Christ. We also looked at the fulfillment of the law of God in our lives, centering around the life and work of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Growing Down : Gods Grace, in Spite of Myself by Sarah Horner Wetzel -

The entire work of our salvation, all the way from justification through sanctification is fulfilled by Christ. All our salvation-initiation, process, and fulfillment-find their base in who He is, what He's done, what He is to us now, and what He provides. The more we read about, pray about, meditate on, and study the law of God, the more we appreciate the grace of God.

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We respect the law more through study as well-but as great as our appreciation for the law becomes, our appreciation for God's grace should grow and increase all the more. Grace is God's plan and God's provision to keep sin from dominating our lives. Who but God would come up with such a plan? Surely that is the key. Thou shalt and thou shalt not.

And if that doesn't work, we'll put it in capital letters. If that does not work, we'll go to neon. God provides greatly for His people. There is a way to live one's life in Christ with sin bearing less and less domination, and having an ill influence in our walk with the Lord. And it centers upon the grace of God. Now that truly draws me on. That is drawing by lovingkindness. Oh, yes. That is what I want.

Can you be ‘saved’ and not grow? (Justification vs Sanctification)

That is what we should all want. That sounds so good! God's loyal steadfast love, by His grace, provides a way for sin to have less and less of a grip on your life and mine. We also looked at Hebrews Hbr The law of God is unable to set us free from the domination of sin.

When God's Timing Is Taking Too Long

It was never designed to do that. It was, however, designed to let us know what sin is and reveal our personal and individual proclivity towards sin. The law makes nothing perfect; it only demands perfection. Oh how that causes us to appreciate, to hunger for, to desire growth in the grace of God. We shall see the Lord develop a little more of this great truth that grace, not law, is that which makes perfect our faith.