Living One Day at a Time--
By Linda Lee
But for the Grace of God
Life is a gift from God. Have you ever said, "There but for the grace of God, go I?" We need the grace of God in our everyday lives - our getting up, going to work, and starting all over again.
For it is by free grace (God's unmerited favor) that you are saved (delivered from judgment and made partakers of Christ's salvation) through [your] faith. And this [salvation] is not of yourselves [of your own doing, it came not through your own striving], but it is the gift of God
Sometimes it takes difficult experiences or calamity to bring us to the realization that we cannot do things in our own strength, but only with God's help - the continuing salvation of the Lord.
My husband and I used to own a computer business. Sadly, after pouring our "heart and soul" into it for over four years, the business failed, leaving both of us unemployed at the same time, short on transportation, and no savings. The rent and all our bills were overdue with no money in sight. Now what?
We looked to God as our source but it didn't take a rocket scientist or sixteen prayer meetings to figure out the right course of action. We both needed to look for work. We agreed that whoever got the first job would go to work, and the other person would keep on looking while we worked out transportation needs.
We relied on the Lord to help us and prayed, "Open the door that no man can close, and close every door that no man can open," so that we would be where God wanted us to be.
I know your [record of] works and what you are doing. See! I have set before you a door wide open which no one is able to shut; I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept My Word and guarded My message and have not renounced or denied My name.
After resumes were posted, several good job prospects and telephone interviews - nothing. Then I found a humble, but good position nearby, which would make it possible to share one vehicle for a time. The interview went well, almost an on-the-spot job offer. But I was clearly "overqualified" for the position, so the owner of the company wanted to think it over and call back in a day or two.
"No problem," I said. Except we needed a job NOW and our phone was "temporarily disconnected." I diplomatically offered to call him back at the most convenient time the next day, explaining our telephone service was "temporarily disrupted." It seemed we were facing insurmountable odds. How do you get a job, making your follow up calls from a phone booth, with your money running out?
You do it by faith, with God's grace, depending on Him for help, trusting that everything is under control, no matter how bad the circumstances may look. So we drove to a nearby phone booth and made the calls (whom were we fooling? Surely he could hear the traffic sounds in the background). I remember telling my husband on the way back into the house after being put off one more day, "What we need is a job with a sign up bonus like one of the pro football players!"
The next day, we returned to the phone booth, in faith, believing that we had received this job when we prayed. We pulled out of the car ashtray our last 35 cents. I breathed a prayer as I dropped the coins into the slot on the pay phone, knowing that if God didn't come through with this job, we were in real trouble. I pushed aside imaginations of being evicted from our apartment, or ending up in a welfare line. I made the call and by God's grace got the job! Never was I more grateful to receive a job, be it ever so humble, because when we were at the end of our rope (and ourselves) God came through for us.
On my first day on the job, the owner called me into his office and handed me a check for $500, gently suggesting that he thought we might like to take an advance on my paycheck to get the phones turned back on. God was listening and heard my comment. Here was my sign up bonus!
We serve an awesome God! He knows right where we live, all about our circumstances, and exactly what we are going through. Don't ever give up!
If you ever find yourself in over your head, just remember that when you run out of strength that is where God's strength takes over and carries you through. Jesus loves us, and gave Himself for us so that we can have and enjoy our life, walking in the grace and unmerited favor of God - the good life He intended for us to live.
In Ephesians 2:9-10 we see that God’s grace and unmerited favor are free gifts that we cannot earn only enjoy. And as His beloved children we can walk in the confidence that God has gone before us, preparing a place for us, so that we can live the good life, which He intends for us to enjoy.
9 Not because of works [not the fulfillment of the Law's demands], lest any man should boast. [It is not the result of what anyone can possibly do, so no one can pride himself in it or take glory to himself.]
10 For we are God's [own] handiwork, (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time] that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].
- Amplified Bible
I believe that when we rely completely on the Lord Jesus to help us, He not only takes care of all the details. He saves us from every circumstance in which we find ourselves (even if it is our own fault) and places us in exactly the right place at the right time. In other words, He works everything out for our good as He has promised (Romans 8:28). And the best part, God gets all the glory!
Living Life One Day at a Time-
"So don't be anxious about tomorrow. God will take care of your tomorrow too. Live one day at a time.
Matt 6:34 (TLB)