Diary of a Real Mama

One mom's endeavour to become an authentic woman of God

Gracefully Redeemed

on April 19, 2014

Temperatures have been starting to reach the plus side of zero, and with the snow in our backyard steadily receding, I’ve been bitten by the spring cleaning bug. The good (and sometimes bad) thing about spring cleaning is that you finally have to face things you have been ignoring for too long. I won’t go into the gritty details about what I found when I finally got around to cleaning behind my oven, but you get the idea. More importantly than cleaning the house, I’ve been taking the time to do some spring cleaning of the soul. Like the dark recesses behind my stove, when we finally delve into those dark and dusty corners and let in the light what we find probably isn’t pretty. But once our eyes have been opened to what’s there, we can finally start to clean it up.

It seems fitting that with Easter approaching, the concepts of ransom, redemption, and grace have been everywhere I turn. To redeem means to save by payment of a ransom; to ransom is to free from captivity by paying a price. While our society tells us that our worth comes from achievements and material possessions, the truth is that the worth of an item is only as great as what somebody is willing to pay for it.  I’m a very goal-oriented person and truth be told, I get a little too much satisfaction from checking an item off my ‘to-do’ list. Far too often, I’ve bought into the lie that if I just work hard enough, accomplish enough, please others enough, somehow I’ll measure up. The truth is I’ll never be good enough. But I don’t have to be. That’s where grace comes in. The beauty of grace, ‘God’s free and unmerited favour’, is just that – it is free and unmerited. Nothing I can do can add or take away from the grace He has extended to me. Although I know in my head that I can’t earn God’s grace (Ephesians 2:8-9; 2 Timothy 1:9), an honest evaluation of what motivates me and how I spend my time and energy suggests my heart might still believe otherwise. It’s been hard to admit to myself that that’s where I’m at, but I’m so thankful for the recent reminders that God’s grace was offered to me when I was at my absolute worst – smug, and stubborn, and selfish to scratch the surface (Romans 5:8). Without an ounce of effort on my part, Christ still valued me enough to pay the very costly ransom price of His own lifeblood to set me free from sin and save me from a life of perpetually falling short (Matthew 20:28).

I’m slowly learning how liberating it can be when we move beyond the realization that grace cannot be earned to the deeper understanding that grace doesn’t have to be earned. It frees us from the futility of trying to earn it, and instead allows us to humbly and gratefully accept it as a gift. I pray that this Easter season will bring with it a fresh realization that you have been ransomed and redeemed by the most beautiful act of grace. Know that no matter what anyone tells you, or even what you tell yourself, you are worth everything to Christ. You don’t deserve it and can’t do anything to earn it but salvation is yours for the taking. Embrace the gift of freedom that was bought for you with the highest price.

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