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January 6, 2017

Not Willpower, But God’s Power

“By the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace to me was not without effect.” 1 Corinthians 15:10 (NIV)

God’s grace to you is not without effect.  That word means to cause to change.  Your life change as a Christ follower is the result of an exchanged life! It’s not about willpower, but His power.  What else could have changed a man bent on “destroying the church,”  like Paul, in Acts 8:3, who went from “house to house (dragging) out the believers, both men and women and threw them into jail,” to become the greatest missionary of the New Testament church age?  The encounter he had with Christ changed his life dramatically!  What happened?  In the next chapter of Acts, Paul met grace on a road to Damascus where he was headed to imprison even more believers for following Christ.  What effect did grace have on his life? The same effect it will have on yours and mine.

Grace exchanges our sin for God’s forgiveness, our pain for His promises, our brokenness for His wholeness, and our emptiness for His fullness!  When confronted with the truth about who Jesus was, shame and guilt could have overwhelmed Paul for all he had done to Christ’s followers.  Yet, grace gave him hope and purpose. The man who entered that city was different from the one who left.  Grace gives us the promise for real life change.  Grace is God’s power and ability to change us into a new creation in Christ! There is no sin greater than God’s grace!  Grace will enable you to accept yourself, and others, as Christ does.  Embrace His grace today, and notice the effect Christ’s life is having in you!

Thank you, Father, that my life in Christ is not about my ability to change myself into something that will please You or others.  By grace, You accept me just as I am.  You have become my life, and Your grace is changing my attitudes and actions. Help me today to extend that same grace to others in my family, at work or at school.