the power of love

Unconditional love is so awesome.

This thought brought to you by a very easily distracted person, who sat in church yesterday and when it came to receiving the bread and wine the thoughts in her head went something like this:

oh wow thank you God for sending Jesus to die for me this is so amazing and wonderful and oh look there’s that person I need to speak to about such and such and… actually don’t ask me where my mind went, it goes wandering all over the place and I can’t keep track, so at some point I realised and then my thoughts went something like this:

look at me, just look at how I can’t even concentrate for long enough to keep my mind on what Communion is all about – oh wait, that is what Communion is all about! It’s about how fallible I am and how Jesus has done it all for us because we can’t!

Man-made religions tell you that in order to be ok with God you have to do better. Jesus though – he says: I know you can’t, just lean on me and I will make you ok with God.

His love is unconditional – it doesn’t depend on me doing enough good/sorting my head out/becoming pious enough/sitting nicely with my hands folded and paying attention… No, his love is a gift, given to me just because God loves me and not because of anything I’ve done, and he won’t take it away because of anything I do or don’t do. I’m saved by grace – undeserved, unearned, unconditional. And this offer of salvation is open to anyone! just put your faith in Jesus and what he’s done for us by dying on the cross to take on the punishment we deserve – and that’s it, you’re in, and no one will ever snatch you out of his hands.

So I have to put my faith in Jesus and then live a better life?

No. You only have to repent and put your faith in Jesus – he died in our place, taking on the punishment for all our sins! Believe in him and you’ll be saved – unconditionally, not dependent on your good behaviour!

Sure, you will live differently as a result – once you’re saved, you’ll want to live God’s way, out of sheer gratitude for what he’s done for you! And he will put his Spirit in you, to help you and guide you, so it’s going to be God enabling you to do better. But that’s a result of what happened when you got saved – it’s not a condition for salvation! My place in heaven is 100% assured, my adoption into God’s family is forever, all by grace, all totally undeserved, unearned, unconditional.

This is why I can face each day with confidence – knowing I’m safe in God’s hands, he loves me and he’ll never give up on me. There’s nothing I could have done to earn his love, and there’s nothing I can do to lose it.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8)

It’s a gift. It’s free – free to us, though very costly to Jesus: that’s how much God loves us! He’s not waiting for you to get your act together, to become good enough – he knows you can’t, and his message to mankind through Christ is: you can’t do it but I can and I have. Come to me. Receive my gift.

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