"… be strong (strengthened inwardly) in the grace (spiritual blessing) that is [to be found only] in Christ Jesus." 2 Timothy 2:1, AMPC
It's February and time for another MONTHLY BASIC DEVO!
This month, in THE FEBRUARY ISSUE, we are going to focus on GRACE BASICS -- specifically, how to experience more "grace for your pace!"
If you've felt stressed, anxious or overwhelmed by the constant barrage of conflicting news, daily pressures of work and family and the uncertainty of things to come -- I have good news! God has given you and incredible advantage for overcoming all of these things and the ability to reign in life!
Let's dig in...
BE STRONG IN GRACE!
Ever feel like a hamster on the wheel and looking for a way off?
If you’re living life with one nostril above water, keep reading!
Life is busy, right? We live in a changing world, with instant access to information, multiple plates to spin and priorities to juggle. The pace of life moves at a rapid rate. It’s likely that very few of us are able to take anything off our plate; but rather, our to-do lists keep growing! We are parents, spouses, employees, employers, friends, siblings, coworkers, teammates, and so much more. We all have many roles to play and responsibilities to fulfill. Often, we do feel like that hamster on the perpetual treadmill of life and we desperately need grace for the pace!
God's grace is a “many splendored” thing. In addition to the unmerited favor we receive through God’s saving grace; we can experience God’s standing grace where we receive an internal infusion of His strength. When we access God's grace in this way – He supernaturally infuses us with His power and ability to help us stand strong. This grace is a tangible deposit of God's strength where He expands our capacity and enables us to accomplish more than we ever could on our own. We can also live in God's serving grace to fulfill our calling and purpose. By His serving grace, He endues us with His power and ability to do what He's called us to do.
And here's the thing -- God's grace is a free gift and He wants every believer to receive an abundance of it in order to reign in life! Romans 5:17 tells us, "...much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ."
We can access more of God’s grace by running to His “throne of grace” to receive it. Hebrews 4:6 says, "Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God's unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it]."
If you're facing challenges today, like – unexpected demands, a to-do list that won't quit, overwhelming responsibilities, the straw-that-wants-to-break-the-camel's-back, spiritual battles, burdens, cares and deadlines that make your load feel heavy – then take time to run to God’s throne of grace to obtain grace to help you in your time of need!
Perhaps you want to know more about this amazing benefit and gift from God...let's keep going in our study.
GRACE AND PEACE
Who doesn't love everything about this pic?
If you're on the verge of a meltdown, go to God's throne of grace and obtain His grace, today! (I'm not ruling out a beach day too; but, when we can't get to the sandy beach with aqua water and blue skies...we can always run to God for His peace and grace!)
Thank God for His grace!
>> Grace is not a vague, ethereal thing. Grace is a tangible spiritual commodity that God dispenses from His throne of grace straight into your heart!
When you're living a very busy life that seems to be on-the-go more than you'd like, at times, things can get hectic. You face legitimate demands on your time, which also pulls on your emotional, mental, physical and spiritual quotient. With business meetings, appointments, family obligations, household chores, duties and every unexpected thing that comes up on your daily schedule, life is just plain busy. If you've been running at a rapid pace, burning the candle at both ends and living with very little personal margin lately, what can you do?
Here are two options:
Option A: Have a Major Meltdown Option B: Get Grace for the Pace
Sometimes Option A doesn't sound too bad. The thought of having a meltdown, a pity party or a crying like a baby sounds tempting at times, but who really wants to live like that?
There's a better way, Option B. Just run to the throne of God's grace and load up. God always dispenses grace to those who come and get it. When you access God's grace by faith, He will absolutely and supernaturally download His strength into your very spirit enabling you to do what you thought you couldn't. This is a real and tangible exchange! He will increase your margin and give you His ability to do what seemed humanly impossible. His power will strengthen your inner man. When you are weak, He will give you His strength so you can reign in life!
But that's not all!!
Ever noticed that every epistle in the New Testament starts with some variation of these words, "Grace to you and peace from God…"?
Most of the epistles end with something like this: "The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you..." (YES! We find this in Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon and Hebrews—even James, and 1 and 2 Peter -- and the Book of Revelation.)
You get the idea that the Lord wants His people filled with grace and peace. Maybe these salutations and benedictions carry more weight than we've considered.
Let's take a look at "grace and peace" according to Strong's Exhaustive Concordance.
What is grace? Grace—from the Greek word "charis"—is a multi-faceted word. Some of the well-known meanings of grace include: favor, loving-kindness and goodwill; the merciful kindness by which God, exerting his holy influence upon souls, turns them to Christ, keeps, strengthens, increases them in Christian faith, knowledge, affection, and kindles them to the exercise of the Christian virtues. When "grace" is bestowed on us, we receive God's favor and divine influence and His inner strength and ability to do all that is set before us.
What is peace? Peace—from the Greek word "eirene"—refers to a tranquil state, quietness and rest. It speaks of harmony between individuals and peace with God. The thing that's so remarkable about peace is that sometimes it's more noticeable when it's gone! A lack of peace is a life of turmoil, anxiety, unrest, rage and frustration. Receiving God's peace, gives us a quiet, tranquil, fearless heart full of confidence, assurance and rest in God. His peace acts like a bodyguard—it guards our minds and hearts in the midst of trouble and fear.
We can run to God's throne of grace to obtain "grace and peace" to help us in our time of need. His grace and peace is BETTER than a day at the beach ... and a day at the beach is better when we are living in His grace!
ACCESSING OR FRUSTRATING THE GRACE?
Don't frustrate the grace...access more of it!
"I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain." Galatians 2:21, KJV
Many people know of grace by the well-known acronym: God's Riches At Christ's Expense—and while this is a great definition, God's grace is much more than a cliché. As we've mentioned, The Bible describes at least three types of grace: saving grace, standing grace and serving grace.
Without saving grace, we cannot have faith to be saved! We need to receive God's saving grace, in order to have faith to believe in Jesus. (Eph. 2:8)
Without standing grace, we are weak and defeated. We need to access God's standing grace to be strong and victorious in our Christian life, as well as to endure trials, pressures, challenges, temptations and persecutions. (Rom. 5:2, 2 Cor. 12:9)
Without serving grace we operate in the flesh and become weary. We need to employ God's serving grace to do our part in fulfilling the callings, tasks, plans, purposes and assignments He has for our lives. (1 Peter 4:10, Rom. 12:6)
God is so kind, generous and favorable, He has made loads of grace available to us. The question we must ask is this: are we accessing or frustrating God's grace in our lives? Let's not frustrate the grace; let's access it!
Don't Frustrate the Grace: "I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain." (Galatians 2:21, KJV) It was God's grace, not our righteous works that gave us right standing with Him. Don't frustrate that grace! We frustrate God's grace when we DON'T believe or receive it. When we are too self-sufficient, self-assured, self-reliant we don't think we need God's grace and this short-circuits and frustrates the grace of God. Instead, believe His grace is a thing -- a supernatural, tangible thing He wants to download into your spirit! Receive it! Lean on His saving, standing and serving grace.
Do Access the Grace: "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God." (Romans 5:1-2, NKJV) We access God's grace by faith. We believe. We receive. By faith, we can approach His very throne of grace to find grace to help us! (Hebrews 4:16)
How's all of this for some really good news! It seems like an intangible, ethereal concept, but make no mistake -- God's grace is a tangible spiritual commodity and He wants to deposit an abundance of it to you and I, today! God is so generous and all we have to do is believe and receive.
LET'S PRAY AND ASK FOR MORE GRACE!
Be strong in the Lord and the power of His mighty grace, today!
I don't know about you, but I have found that the longer I walk with the Lord, the more I realize my daily need for the grace of God. It’s no wonder that when the Apostle Paul needed additional strength for all of the persecutions he faced as he worked day and night spreading the gospel, that the Lord told him, “‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9, NIV
Be strengthened inwardly by God's grace today! Boldly approach God’s throne of grace and access God's "grace for the pace."
Say This: "Father, I come to You today to obtain grace to help in my time of need. You know all the things I am facing and I thank You that I can be strengthened inwardly by Your grace. Thank You for Your strength and ability to do all that is set before me. I ask You to load me up with extra grace and spiritual blessings. Today, I believe and I receive a fresh deposit of Your grace to reign in life! I declare, I am strong in the Lord and the power of His grace. In Jesus' Name. Amen."
There you go! I hope you enjoyed the February Issue of our Monthly Basic Devo. Now, you have a month's worth of Bible basic content to chew on and put into practice. I hope you will share this Devo with your friends and save it so you can refer to it all month!
Be blessed my friend and have a great month receiving an abundance of His grace!
Love and blessings,
DID YOU KNOW???
I wrote a Devo for the YouVersion Bible App called, "21 Days of Grace for the Pace" and you can download it for free by clicking below! Join over 25,000 other people and complete this Devo on your phone over the next 21 days!
The Basics With Beth Team: (L to R) Zack Spangler, me, Amanda Harrison, Kyle Misak, Eric Jones and Tara Farrell
Amanda Harrison has been serving as the Executive Director and TV Producer for The Basics With Beth from our inception, 6 years ago! What a gifted, fun and Jesus-loving leader she is and what a joy it has been for all of us at the BWB to work with Amanda to take the Bible basics to the world!
Amanda is entering an exciting new season as she and her husband are expecting their 3rd child and she will be stepping off staff to be a full-time stay-at-home mom. We are thrilled for her and we have no doubt that all of the Bible basics seeds Amanda has helped us to create will continue to produce eternal fruit for years to come.
Join us in praying for God's very best AND more grace for Amanda and her family in their new season!