September 08, 2016

Sanctification Starts With Grace

Numbers 6:24-26

The Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you.

—  Numbers 6:25

One thing I knew with total assur­ance, as a young pastor, was that my friend Ron and I both needed grace. In fact, grace is what we all need most.

Simply put, grace is unmerited ­favor. God loves you and blesses you, even though you don’t deserve it. That’s grace. Jesus gave up his own life to pay the price of your sin. That’s grace. Every day God reaches into his unlimited supply of goodness and love and pours it out on you. God shines his love on you. His light replaces your darkness and sin, filling you with his spirit of righteousness.

When you read the blessing in today’s verse, you can almost feel God smiling down on you. This is what Jesus accomplished for you. And when you believe and trust that you can have new life, full and free, because of Jesus’ finished work, that is faith—another wonderful gift, by God’s grace.

Every day, Ron woke up, got dressed, and drove off in his Lexus to work—to prove himself to the world. For many years, he spent his whole existence working for love, trying to do things to get his dad to love him, and trying to get the world to approve of him.

While there are a lot of Christian books, curricula, plans, “to-do lists,” and systems to help people like Ron (and the rest of us) enter the process of sanctification, the thing we need most is grace. God’s grace. Do you see that as your greatest need too?

Lord, let me feel you smiling down on me. Once again I accept your gift of grace with a believing heart. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Keith Mannes

Keith Mannes serves as pastor at Highland Christian Reformed Church in McBain, Michigan. Keith and his wife, Alicia, recently celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary,
and they are thankful for their three children—Eben, Charis, and Breanna.

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