Sometimes our past can weigh us down and the past of the ones we love can keep our relationships from being what God wants. Yes those things help bring us to where we are now. Trials shape us into who we become; regardless the choices you make right now should carry more weight in the now than the past does. Let us take a look at the most perfect form of love in action, Jesus’ death on the cross. It was a choice. A Divine sacrifice Christ’s life was for us. It was grace that we could never earn. Dr. James Stewart once said love and sacrifice are inseparable. For true love what would we sacrifice? When we get up early before our children to start the day, is that really a supreme sacrifice? When we find that shirt we want, but don’t buy it because our family’s needs come first? Anything we could give up for the ones we love would never show as much grace as what Jesus did on the cross. He paid the price for those pasts, an atonement with his life. Once we have accepted Jesus as our savior we need to accept the fact that we are new, brand spanking new. Remember, we all stumble in many ways (James 3:2). The Good News is that God loved the world so much he gave his only son …John 3:16
Dr. Lewis Gregory tells a story of holding his grandchild for the first time in his book Introducing the New You from the early 80’s. The newborn baby, so soft and tiny, was whimpering softly. He said in that instant the child reminded him of the sacrificial lamb. He thought how could I sacrifice my child for any reason. Oh what a thing God did for us. Dr. Gregory mentions several songs that describe each writer’s view of the cross and how much they were like his own view. When the following writers wrote these songs it could have been because they actually realized how Christ had removed their past.
William Newell described it like this: Years I spent in vanity and pride, caring not my Lord was crucified, Knowing not it was for me He died on Calvary.
George Bennard wrote in the Old Rugged Cross, stained with blood so divine, A wondrous beauty I see, For twas on that old rugged cross Jesus suffered and died, To pardon and Sanctify me, Oh the love that drew salvation’s plan, Oh the GRACE that brought it down to man, Oh the mighty gulf that God did span at Calvary, Mercy there was great, and GRACE was free, Pardon there was multiplied to me, there my burdened soul found liberty.
Isaac Watts’ song When I Survey the Wondrous Cross ends in …Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all.
During your routine when you encounter your friends, coworkers, spouse, or children treat them as if they have a clean slate. Grace, just like sacrifice, should come with love- It should be as if love is the present, sacrifice is the package, and grace is the bow. If something crazy happens and your reminded of the past just Forget It!
May you be blessed and encouraged.
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