June 15, 2010

Grace by the Panful

Psalm 103

Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits …
Psalm 103:2


We have an old, scratched, well-used rectangular aluminum pan that my wife often uses for baking. The kitchen doesn’t seem complete without it. On the stovetop, on top of the toaster oven, or, best of all—in the oven itself. I know when it’s hiding there—I can smell something baking!

One morning there were especially great smells coming from that pan. I thought perhaps my wife had baked her special coffee cake for breakfast. But glancing through its translucent cover, I saw it wasn’t coffee cake. It was brownies. My heart leaped!

Enter temptation. Should I quickly snitch a brownie before breakfast? After all, my mother wasn’t around to slap my hand. And if my wife walked in, I’d just offer her one too. What a life!

We have read Psalm 103 today. With all due respect to my wife’s wonderful baking skills, God is better than the best she can dish out.

According to this psalm, God forgives, heals, redeems, crowns, satisfies, renews—just to name a few of his wonderful characteristics. And the best news? His pan never empties. The brownies in the pan were soon gone. But there is no “last piece” to God’s treats—and no guilt when I take a second piece. What a life! What an eternity! What grace—by the panful!

God of abounding grace, we thank you today for the feast of grace you spread before us day after day. Through Jesus Christ, Amen.

About the author — Dale Vander Veen

Dale Vander Veen is a retired Christian Reformed pastor who with his wife, Edith, has ministered in California, Washington, and Michigan. They have three married children and six grandchildren. He currently writes a daily e-mail series of devotions.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!