“But for the grace of God” is one of my favorite phrases to describe how blessed I am.
Paul was the first person to use this verse as an explanation of his life and ministry:
“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me” (I Corinthians 15:10).
In this verse Paul was talking about who he was because of the grace of God. The phrase I grew up hearing talks about who we’d be without the grace of God.
Either way, the greatest common denominator is grace.
Grace is the best motivator.
Nothing empowers you toward change, toward action like the undeserved gift of grace.
I try my best to see everything through this lens, especially as I hang out with non-Christians. They need to see that grace is for them.
Do you remember what life was like before Christ?
Do you remember the patience and mercy of God during that time?
How often we forget where we started. I know that I’m guilty of this mentality.
As a child, I was reminded quite regularly of how fortunate I was to end up on top despite of the abandonment of my parents.
And it’s true.
I should’ve been placed in foster care.
I shouldn’t have graduated from college.
I should’ve ended up impoverished or inprisoned.
The statistics were not in my favor.
But for the grace of God…
Redemption and restoration is found through grace. There is hope for the seemingly hopeless.
Christ in us is the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27) and Christ is full of grace and truth (John 1:14).
This is what makes the gospel such wonderful news.