Daily encouragement

Video by

Mia Carson

ACF Devo Team

dive deeper

2 Corinthians 6:1-2

Working together with him, then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain. For he says, "In a favorable time I listened to you, and in a day of salvation I have helped you.“ Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.

Behind the Scenes

The grace of God, immeasurable and unmerited. The word grace can be thrown around in many references and conversations, especially within Christian circles. Not only is the definition of grace important to grasp but also understanding where it comes from (the author) and its’ revelation (the timing).

Our verse of the day clues us into the answer.  First off, God is the author of grace and is best considered as the Lord of Grace. He gives grace out of love and Paul appeals to his Corinthian audience to not receive this grace in vain. A gift is to be received, and Paul references Isaiah 49:8 to show that God foretold the coming of this gift when He would reconcile mankind to himself. This reconciliation is achieved through His Son, Jesus Christ. We now live in the age of grace, “Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”

A common use of grace in the secular world is in the financial sector, notably credit cards, where payment of debt can be extended via a “grace period.” The period is meant to provide the borrower time to come up with the payment.  This is both similar and dissimilar to the grace of God. The current age is also a grace period, in that God wants all people to come to know him: “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). The dissimilarity is that God’s grace involves erasing the payment for the debt because we’ll never be able to repay.

Like a credit card system, God’s grace period will also come to end. The opportunity for those to turn to God, asking for forgiveness and repenting, will have passed. It’s during this age that we see and witness the manifold exposition of God’s grace via the Holy Spirit working through his believers and ultimately the church. As believers, we are God’s ambassadors communicating this beautiful story of grace because we have received it! No wonder Paul calls us to not receive this grace in vain.

Make it Real

I’m pondering this morning what it would look like to be an extender of God’s grace. In other words, what if I truly comprehended the immensity of God’s freely given grace towards me and then “passed it on.” Like the “pay it forward” phenomena that happened a few years back, which is an example of grace although fleeting, what can I do to live a life of grace that is evident to those I encounter now and tomorrow?

The result is a Gospel-led life where evangelism is not a goal, but a response. A natural response to share what I have been given by the ultimate gift-giver himself, God. The gift of His Son to die on a cross for me and you, demonstrates his love has no bounds. Therefore, anyone is a potential receiver of this gift.  

Folks, we are in target-rich environment, but it’s not a goal to “bag as many as I can.” Rather it’s a mission to love as many as I can, serving them and introducing them to Jesus because time is short, and their debt is still “on the books.” Yet, we know the One who “keeps the books” and truly wants to move their name from the debt column into the Lamb’s Book of Life (Revelation 20:12).

End in Prayer

Heavenly Father, oftentimes I forget the gifts you have given me, the gift of breath in my lungs, shelter over my head, and food in my stomach. But even more so, help me to recognize the spiritual gifts of love, grace, hope, and joy. May I never take them for granted. Show me how to use them to be your servant in a world desperate for acknowledgment and hope. In the mighty Name of Jesus, I pray. Amen!

Written by

Danny Venhaus

ACF Operations Director