If Not For Grace

We listened with aching hearts as the couple shared with my dad and I a recent tragedy within their family.  Kevin’s (not his real name!) brother had shot and killed his wife in a fit of anger and was headed out to take his own life when Kevin was able to reach him by phone and talk him down.  Kevin is a believer, but his brother isn’t.  Kevin explained that what was done was done and there was no turning that back, but taking his own life, a life without Christ, would solve nothing except to assure his eternal separation from the Father. The brother turned himself in.

The family is devastated.  This fit of rage has changed the course of life for many people. A wife and mother is dead.  A husband and father is facing prison, probably for life.  The children who witnessed this horrific act by their step-father may never recover emotionally.  The parents of this man are hurt, embarrassed, broken.  This wrong reaches out ugly fingers of pain and hurt into a wide, wide area.  Life is fragile and we can’t even begin to fathom the people our decisions will touch, whether for good or for bad.

The question many people ask when trouble comes is “if God knows everything, then He knew we’d make a mistake and this would happen.  If He knew, why didn’t He stop it?”

Why?  “Because that would be like stepping out in front of a moving automobile and expecting God to keep it from hitting you.  There are consequences to our actions.  Out of His love, He gives us free will and in His mercy He allows us to experience the consequences of our action.  And in His grace, He forgives and makes a way for us when we make wrong choices.”  [Redeeming Luke -Days of Grace Trilogy book 1]

Kevin’s brother made some really bad choices.  He and his family are living the consequences of those choices now and will do so for the rest of their lives. But God, in His great mercy and grace, offers forgiveness to him if he is repentant and calls out to God. It won’t change the consequences of his choices in this life, but he can begin a new life with Christ.  His body may be bound within prison walls, but his heart can find freedom.

There is no sin, other than rejecting Jesus, that can’t be forgiven.  God loves you so much and He desires for you to love Him in return.  If not for grace, we’d all be doomed.  Are you tired of running from Him, trying to make your life work without Him?  He waits for you.  He is only a whisper away!  Call out to Him and He will answer.  In Him, you can find grace and peace.

Lots of love, Sharon

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