July 15

The Simplicity of Grace

Introduction

As we wrap up this week of simple Christianity, today we look at grace. Many of us are so hard on ourselves and struggle to allow ourselves to taste the grace the Father has for us. We look to earn love and acceptance in this world, but God’s way of grace couldn’t be more different from the world who tells us we are what we do. May today be a breath of fresh air as you encounter the grace of God that requires nothing in return.

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Scripture

“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me.” 1 Corinthians 15:10

Worship

Whole Heart (Hold Me Now) | Hillsong UNITED feat. Taya Smith

Whole Heart (Hold Me Now) [Live] – Hillsong UNITED

Whole Heart (Hold Me Now) by Hillsong UNITED, recorded live at Hillsong Worship & Creative Conference in Sydney, Australia. Listen on our new album People at http://untd.me/people?IQid=youtube. We’re on The People Tour in the United States right now. Find dates and get tickets at http://hillsongunited.com.

Devotional

Grace is a glorious commodity of heaven that can only be received and experienced in surrender to the will and love of our heavenly Father. Our world is unable to offer grace because it is in a constant state of need, and grace can only be offered from a place of true wholeness and love. In utter completeness, our God is able to offer us grace because he needs nothing from us in return. He requires nothing of us, so he offers us everything apart from any ability or inherent value we possess.

Grace comprises the core of the Christian foundation. It’s God’s grace that drove him to send his Son as payment for our sins. It’s through grace that we enter into the fullness of restored relationship with our good Father. It’s through grace that we receive forgiveness for our sins. And it’s in the simplicity of grace that we are transformed into the very image of our Savior.

I find myself continually missing out on all that God’s grace offers me. I retreat into a lifestyle of works where I try to earn what God has already given me. I work for the love of my heavenly Father and others, vying for affection rather than receiving the ceaseless love of God for me. I strive and work for holiness and righteousness instead of simply aligning myself with the new nature of freedom God has offered me in grace.

1 Corinthians 15:10 says, “By the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain.” Can you say today that you are what you are by the grace of God? Is your life marked by and founded on God’s limitless supply of grace? Are your emotions, perspectives, pursuits, and relationships founded on the notion that God loves you simply because he loves you? Have you found total security and rest in the loving embrace of a God who longs to fill you, sustain you, bless you, provide for you, and love you simply because it’s his desire?

Allow God to fill you with a fresh revelation of his grace today. Come before him with an open heart, and allow the truth of his unceasing and grace-filled love wash through you. Allow him to cast out any fear, toil, or burden that is keeping you from the abundant life available to you. Spend time in guided prayer being transformed by the simplicity of grace.

Prayer

1. Meditate on the principles of grace. How does it work? Where does it come from? How can you experience it? Allow God’s word to lay a foundation of grace by which you live.

“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me.” 1 Corinthians 15:10

“For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.” Galatians 2:19-21

2. In what ways are you living a works based life? Where do you need a fresh vision for living by grace?

3. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you a fresh vision for how deeply God’s grace goes in any and every circumstance you face. Ask him to fill you with a fresh revelation of how deeply he loves you regardless of what you do. Allow him to lead you into a lifestyle of living by grace in every pursuit, relationship, thought, and perspective.

Go

Living in response to God’s love rather than working to earn it changes everything. It eliminates the pressures of this world that are founded upon personal success in every area of life. It frees us to live joyfully and satisfied rather than incomplete and in a constant state of want. May you make time throughout your day today to receive a fresh revelation of grace. May you discover through grace the life Jesus died to freely give. May you discover how wonderful it is to be loved by a God who requires nothing of you before he gives you everything.


Extended Reading: Ephesians 2
or watch The Bible Project’s video on Ephesians.