Grace, mercy, and peace will be with us from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, in truth and love.
2 John 1:3 - NRSV
Thought: The presence of Christ is the ultimate gift.
God has always desired to be with his people, desired to share his love and be with his children. When we think about the grand plan and the stages of history, it is God who prepares a place, a land, a temple for his presence. A connection between heaven and earth. Ultimately His plan is to bring us all together where death can no longer separate us.
The Grace of God as a gift.
Gift are best when they are something we can use, you may be sitting at home wondering why you need so many pairs of socks or what to do with all the leftover food. Christmas for some is a time of indulgence and often we have more than we need.
God gives us grace in abundance, but also abundance in where we need in the most. Hebrews 4.16
Let us, then, feel very sure that we can come before God’s throne where there is grace. There we can receive mercy and grace to help us when we need it.
Hebrews 4:16 - NCV
A little self knowledge will tell us where we are in need and where we can improve, to be all we are meant to be. When set goals even small ones then the chances of us hitting those goals goes up, or at least we will know what direction we are and if we are going wrong.
Discovering what we are doing wrong helps us go in the right direction. God’s gift of grace changes and transforms our lives. Colossians 1 speaks of hearing and truly understanding the grace of God.
Life is a gift, eternal life is when we know God and Jesus Christ the gift giver. The kingdom, where we find God’s presence, is what we are seeking, and it’s when we focus on that kingdom and we focus on what a God wants we come into the life he has for us.
Knowing the value of your life and that you have reason and purpose in being, and don’t waste the gifts we have been given especially His grace.
Mercy is where God is delaying judgement, We all know that in some ways we have wasted the gifts of God, we have taken for granted in our privileged world, and taken advantage of the grace of God. If we are honest there are times we have not put God first and have idolatry in our hearts. From history we know times where God people have put themselves first or placed their trust in other things from God, the people of God have been removed, originally from the garden and later the promised land. Time and time again this is the mercy of God. Adam and Eve removed from the garden least they live forever without God.
I will recount the gracious deeds of the Lord, the praiseworthy acts of the Lord , because of all that the Lord has done for us, and the great favour to the house of Israel that he has shown them according to his mercy, according to the abundance of his steadfast love.
Isaiah 63:7 NRSV
Jesus Christ is called the prince of peace, the angels declared the war is over, God has come to make peace with us. The word in Hebrew is shalom, nothing missing nothing broken.
This peace is only truly possible when Christ reigns in full, although we have a foretaste now. Isaiah saw this and wrote
Then justice will dwell in the wilderness, and righteousness abide in the fruitful field. The effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever. My people will abide in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.
Isaiah 32:16-18 - NRSV