Saturday, May 22, 2010

How I love Thee Lord: Irresistible Grace

 ~Sometimes its hard to believe just how much we can love someone we've never seen. We have never seen God. I mean, we've seen Him at work, we see Him in answered prayers. We see Him in other Christians lives, we see Him in His beautiful creation. But I've never placed my fingers in Christs scarred hand, the hand that took the nails one by one in my stead. I've never seen with my eyes the face of my King. But I love him.

~This in and of itself is a work of God - a beautiful work done in the heart of every person He draws to Himself.

~I find the doctrine of irresistible grace to be one of the most profound and beautiful things Gods Word holds. Think about it carefully. I once heard a pastor describe it with the metaphor of a bucket of water deep in a well. God doesn't just call us to Himself, He doesn't just do the work in our hearts to enable us to even accept his call, He drags us every step of the way to our knees at the cross. Its like a bucket of water deep in a well - we have to lower the bucket, fill it with water, and drag it, hand over hand, to the top. So when I say "How I love Thee Lord", I am only giving back to God what He put in my heart in the first place.

~Some days I feel that I have "fallen for God", head over heels in love with my Savior. Everything He does is beautiful, everything He does is more than enough for me. Then there are days that I am empty, cold, frustrated, and feel alone. I complain, I gripe about life, I worry about what God may have in store. Even so He draws me back to Himself, convicting me, changing me, showing me how truly purposeless my life would be without Him. Even as His grace is irresistible in salvation, it is irresistible after salvation when we stray. And this in itself is comforting. That He shall never leave nor forsake me, that He will finish what He began.

"And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ." Philippians 1:6

~So take time to rejoice in the joy of Gods love, love that He has given to us and that we then offer back to Him! Here are some verses that have been on my heart to get you started, they are words to make our own...

"He brought me to the banqueting house,
      And his banner over me
was love." Songs of Solomon 2:4

"Oh, how I love Your law!
is my meditation all the day.
 You, through Your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies;
         For they
are ever with me.
 I have more understanding than all my teachers,
         For Your testimonies
are my meditation.
I understand more than the ancients,
         Because I keep Your precepts.
 I have restrained my feet from every evil way,
         That I may keep Your word.
I have not departed from Your judgments,
         For You Yourself have taught me.
 How sweet are Your words to my taste,
Sweeter than honey to my mouth!
 Through Your precepts I get understanding;
         Therefore I hate every false way.
" Psalm 119:97-104

"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written:
“ For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” 

Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:35-39

"Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:1-4

"Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens,
   your faithfulness to the clouds.

Your righteousness is like the mountains of God;
 your judgments are like the great deep;
   man and beast you save, O LORD.
 How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
   The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.

They feast on the abundance of your house,
   and you give them drink from the river of your delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
   in your light do we see light." Psalm 36:5-9

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