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Thoughts on Today's Verse...

Dietrich Bonhoeffer said years ago that grace had become cheapened. I wonder what he would say today? I'm all for grace, but I'm horrified at the cost by which it came — Jesus' death on the cross. I can't for the life of me understand how we can so often claim to have received it and yet bear no resemblance in character to Jesus, the one who brought it to us at such a high cost. God's Word through Samuel is a harsh one. Yet, it is one that I believe we must include in our triumphant song of grace. You see, true grace changes us. It will make us gracious and more like the Grace-giver himself. If not, what we call grace is impotent, powerless, and false. Paul called this a form of religion that denied God's true power in us (2 Timothy 3:5). Grace should lead us to become like Jesus (Luke 6:40; Colossians 1:28-29) in his righteous character, gracious compassion, and love-based justice (Philippians 2:1-8). Let's return obedience to the pantheon of virtues and rescue it from the attic of our religious past and our current disregard for God's way in our lives, as shown by our disobedience (Matthew 7:12-29).

My Prayer...

Father, I know you are disappointed with my sin, yet your grace still flows and covers me. Father, I NEVER want to presume on that grace or cheapen it with reckless sin and disobedience. You know the deepest struggles of my character and the things I only want to "kinda give up." So, please work your perfection in me through the Holy Spirit, conforming me to be more and more like my Savior Jesus, in whose name I pray. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayer on Today's Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to [email protected].

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Today's Verse Illustrated

Inspirational illustration of 1 Samuel 12:15