Summary: The Grace of God, Missions, Salvation, Witnessing, Evangelism
June 10, 2007
Victory Native American United Methodist Church
Rev. Larry S. King
Main Hymn: Amazing Grace
Page 378, Methodist hymnal
1. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me,
I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see……
2. Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, and grace my fears relieved,
how precious did that grace appear, the hour I first believed.
3. When we’ve been there ten thousand years bright shining as the sun,
we’ve no less days to sing God’s praise than when we first begun.
Those words written so long ago still have the power to move the heart today. The words still speak to our souls today if we will just let them. The story of these words tell us of a loving God, a heavenly father that loves us so much that he provided a way for us to reconnect to a
relationship with Him through the sacrifice of his son. These words describe the doctrine of God’s divine grace, and God’s mighty power and grace are still attached to them to this day.
Definition of Grace: Old Testament:
GRACE can also mean: to stoop in kindness to an inferior, to bestow, to implore, and to move to favor by petition.
New Testament: GRACE can mean: God’s goodness, love, mercy, and kindness toward people without regard to their work, deeds, and in spite of what they deserve.
For a while now, I have had this hymn going around in my head. It is one of those things that happen when God is trying to tell me something. I can’t always figure out right away what it is he is trying to say, but I try to listen.
I’ll go to a quiet place, maybe read some scripture or just pray quietly throughout the day, take a drive or go to a park to listen to the Lord. Usually one of these techniques will let me be quiet and still long enough for God to get what He wants me to understand through my thick head. This time it wasn’t so easy. It took a drive to the mountains, Lake Junaluska in fact to understand the message.
God’s amazing Grace! I am so thankful for the loving grace of God. I am thankful for the fact that God wants the best for his children and that he loves us enough to correct us when we stray.
• He offers us life when we deserve death.
• He offers us mercy when we deserve judgement.
• He offers us unconditional love when we can’t love ourselves.
God’s amazing Grace! I am so thankful that about 2,000 years ago, a man named Jesus, laid down his life for us then took it up again. In doing so, He defeated death, hell and the grave. He went to be with his father, our heavenly father, to prepare for us a place so we can be with him eternally when our race on this earth is over. What he has prepared for those who trust him as savior our human minds can barely perceive.
As I was sitting at Lake Junaluska, watching the beautiful lake, watching the sun go down with all of the beautiful colors in the sky reflecting off the lake, all I could think of was the words to this old hymn of the church. I thought, my God, my God, what amazing grace that you would give us something as beautiful as this earth with all of its wonders when we deserve nothing.
I thank you God that you would make a way for us to return to you even though it meant the suffering and death of your son Jesus. I thank you God that you would include us in your family and make us joint heirs with Christ, if we only put our trust in Jesus. It is such a simple thing but so hard for some of us to do.
I thought I needed to revisit this old hymn and let it speak to me once again. When I see the evil in this world, the deaths, the violence, the wars, and the way people treat each other I wonder what God sees in any of us. What is it about this creation is so special that he would care so much for us that he would send his only son to die in our place? It is because he loves us so very much!
I think God looks down on us and in his glorious infinite wisdom, he sees the state we have let ourselves fall into. He sees a creation that cannot repair or redeem itself. He sees a creation in desperate need of divine intervention. He, out of his infinite love and compassion, sees a creation crying out for a savior, crying out for mercy, crying out for help, knowing that we cannot help ourselves!