Our Devotion for today is taken from: Amazing Grace Devotions for Lent by Michael Hoy.
10 But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them—though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me.
1 Corinthians 15:10NRSV
THE NEW LIFE IN CHRIST
Paul knew what his life had been like. In his religious zeal, he persecuted the church and even oversaw the stoning of Stephen. But God wasn’t finished with him. In God’s grace and mercy, Paul would be chosen, and he would become an apostle of the church. Through this gift of grace, he would extend the church’s outreach to many lands and nations. The grace of God through Christ would rescue him, nurture him and set him free on a new path of life in the promise of salvation.
At times our own weaknesses, failings, and sins may haunt us. They may even defeat our sense of personal worth and make us feel useless. But God does not give up on us, and God’s grace is not in vain. Through Christ, we are prized as God’s chosen ones. Through the spirit, our whole being is enlightened, engaged, and moved into a new and promising life. And through our faithful witness, others may come to cherish how new life can truly be.
Embracing and accepting a new direction is challenging for the best of us. We cling to the familiar and comfortable, even when it means we might lose sight of God’s purpose. The things we use to do, places we use to go, and people we use to associate with always seem to be more alluring than the place God is leading us. Learning new things, shifting our behaviors and patterns can seem monumental. Yet, God reminds us that the new things we are learning and new patterns we are adopting will position us to be more relevant and faithful witnesses of God’s transformative love. May we allow the Spirit of God to stretch us this Lenten season, so that, as Michael states: “Through the spirit, our whole being is enlightened, engaged, and moved into a new and promising life.”
Lord, through your enduring grace and good news, lead us to the promise of new life. Amen.