Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
But “when the kindness of God our Savior and his love for mankind appeared, he saved us not by works of righteousness that we have done but on the basis of his mercy, through the washing of the new birth and the renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us in full measure through Jesus Christ our Savior. And so, since we have been justified by his grace, we become heirs with the confident expectation of eternal life.” Titus 3.4-7
There is nothing that I can do to stand before God on my own merit. I cannot stand before him with a list of good deeds that he should stamp with his approval to let me enter his kingdom. John 3.16 tells us that God so loved the world, mankind, that he gave Jesus as a sacrifice for my sins. It was not my good deeds that allow me to stand before God for I had messed up with all the things I had done that were not good. But, because of his mercy, God took the initiative. His kindness and love shine through the fog of deception that I weave around my mind telling myself that I am good. I am washed clean by baptism and renewed by the Holy Spirit. God is not miserly! He pours his Spirit out on us in full measure through Jesus. His grace justifies me! I did not deserve it, but he gave it to me anyway. I become an heir of eternal life. God makes that possible. I can be confident of the expectation of life eternal in heaven.