Summary: God restores me because: 1. God’s love is UNCONDITIONAL 2. Salvation isn’t based on my PERFORMANCE 3. Jesus has already taken my PUNISHMENT 4. Jesus understands my human WEAKNESS 5. God doesn’t hold on to GRUDGES
God’s Restoring Grace
Folks, here is a fact that I have learned in life – relationships change. It does not matter whether it is the relationship with your spouse – your children or your friends. Relationships change. This is also true of your relationship to God. Your relationship to Jesus is like any other relationship. If you want a strong healthy relationship with Jesus – it has to be maintained. No relationship ever stays the same. Relationships take work. Relationships take time. You’re either growing closer to a person or you are getting further away. This is true in any relationship including your relationship with the God.
There is a phrase that I like to use when it comes to understanding relationships – it goes like this – “You can cross the same bridge a thousand times – but it is never the same water.” What this means is that it may always be the same relationship – but it is always changing. You never just stand still. You don’t just become a Christian and that’s it. You’re either having your heart grow warmer every day or it’s growing colder.
Relationships get hot or they can get cold. You can get closer to a person or you can get further away. We all have “up days” and we have “down days”. We face temptations – sometimes we win – sometimes we fail. The good news is that God always offers to us His Restoring Grace. King David sinned against God when he had his affair with Bathsheba – yet he prayed this prayer:
“Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me away from Your presence, And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.” Psalms 51:10-12 (NKJV)
When we blow it – when we walk away – when we stumble – God says, "You can come back to Me. I will restore you." Folks – that is God’s Restoring Grace. Once you have grown cold – once you have let yourself down and God down – why is it that God is willing to take you back? How can we ask Him to “Restore the joy of salvation” in our lives? How can He be so forgiving?
Today I want to look at five reasons why God will extend His Restoring Grace to you – why God offers to take you back after you have sinned. Let’s jump right in. God offers His Restoring Grace to you:
1. Because God’s love is UNCONDITIONAL
God doesn’t say, "I will love you if you are – good – perfect – handsome or holy.” He doesn’t say, "I will love you because you are intelligent – gorgeous or gracious." He just says, "I love you and that’s it – period!" Some of you need to repeat this phrase daily. Some of you need to say this phrase over and over again. What is the phrase? It is: “God will never stop loving me.” God will never stop loving me because I am a recipient of His Restoring Grace.
I want us to look at a passage of scripture from the book of First Corinthians. Paul is writing to the church and here is what he says:
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 (NKJV)
Go ahead and circle the words – “and such were some of you”. What was true then is still true today. God loved believers even before they were believers – even while they were still sinners.
Folks, here is a Fact: God takes sinners and turns them into saints.
God is in the life change business. He takes that which is dirty and cleans it up. He takes that which is broken and fixes it. I don’t know about you – but I am thankful that God is working in my life. He is Great Potter who takes a lump of clay and turns it into a beautiful vessel. That is what God does – He is in the life change business and His love for me is unconditional. He knows exactly what He got when He picked me up. He knows exactly what He got when He invited me to join His family. He knew what condition I was in when He chose me – and the same is true when He chose you.