Sermons

Summary: A woman of grace exemplifies a authentic love for Christ Jesus, our Lord and Savior and stands the test of faith.

A WOMAN OF GRACE

By

Dr. Gale A. Ragan-Reid (February 7, 2018)

“For by grace are we saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:8-10, King James Version [By grace are we saved]).

Greetings in the Holy Name of Jesus,

My sisters and brothers, I thank God for grace. The grace of redemption, the grace of salvation and the grace of eternal life, for I strongly feel within me there is a need for grace. Unlike most but possibly like all in the one body of the faith of our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus my faith leads me to an undeniable hope---a hope that is not deferred, a hope that cries out for salvation---a hope that without fail honors the blood of the lamb that saved me---reached out to me, when I held on with all my might, to live a God-fearing life of grace. I grant you the peace of life everlasting as Jesus bestowed upon us all. Surely, sodden hands and unclean thoughts, regrettable and offensive stole away the hope of faith in life everlasting and engaged condemnation---hardly because of anything that a woman of grace could find in her heart to confess to---but because of the sins of the one body. Howbeit we fail to see the truth of our faith in grace disguised in the lies of sinful deeds that killed, stole and destroyed someone---now tucked away as our secrets---sins unknown and better kept that way, so no one is the wiser, for I hope for life everlasting. Who really knows---How cryptic are my antics and foibles----secrets of the truth of my life but I hope, still?

Do my sins take away my hope for life everlasting? I know it takes a well-made up mind to serve the Lord. Hardly anyone is willing to step out of their circle of friends---out of their close-knit neighborhoods where they feel protection to truly serve the Lord as a woman of grace. It is too painful to feel the rejection of different folks---folks I do not know, folks outside of my community---I am afraid of rejection---criticism, those who might not love me and protect me as I feel the love and protection of my close-knit circle of friends. Is it possible for me to still serve God, our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus as a woman of grace? I do not want my children exposed to such contempt as being denied because of their faith---the person of their faith---even the color of their skin. Did God permit anyone of faith to remain with their close-knit circle in their protective communities?

2

From Abraham to all of us in modern society---leaving your family and the land of your birth---your intimate town of friends, is too much to bear for to let go and let God speak to your heart and speak to your mind is at a level of trust that I found on my journey whenever the dust on my feet seemingly knocked out the lamp---the light of Jesus and simply put in words---I was forced to wait on the Lord before I could proceed forward. When you know everyone even if they practiced hate then they do not believe in the living God, only a false hope; now, I know that kind of hope is false, for the success of false hope denies the faith of Christ Jesus. There is nothing to hope for---Why must my heart and mind feel the possibilities of the world order? Why must I count on God to save me? For me, I know I need God to save me, for His gift of grace---the idea of a loving Father making a way out of no way before whatever misfortune falls upon your life is so endearing your heart and mind explodes with love, for there is nothing as painful as abandonment, denial and false love.

Most importantly, we are called to obey our LORD God for He told Adam and Eve not to eat of the tree of knowledge---good and evil [Genesis 2:17,KJV] yet Eve was tempted just because she was commanded not to, such a rebellious mind and heart---she could not resist going where she was told not to go and she could not resist eating the fruit and sharing the fruit to eat with Adam. There we see the truth of the nature of man to lie to himself in his heart for Adam, once he realized he could not get away with such a sin against the Word of God---he immediately abandoned Eve as woman of his rib and told God she was merely the woman He gave him. How close-knit was the Garden of Eden---God with Adam, Eve and the animals? How could just knowing about a forbidden place with forbidden fruit persuade Eve to disobey? I thank God for all the women of grace who made success out of their close-knit communities and all the women of grace whose children obeyed and no evil fell upon their lives.

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