GOD PROMISES HIS GRACE
My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. 2 Corinthians 12:9
Sometimes the words we pray must make the angels shake their heads in disbelief. Often, we ask God to do something He has already promised to do. How many times have I asked God for grace for myself or for someone else? I should have saved my breath. He has already promised to do just that. As I look back on my life, it’s clear that His grace has always been sufficient, just as He promised. No matter how bad things have been, His grace has seen me through it.
Paul says the same thing in 2 Corinthians 12. He had a miserable affliction that he three times begged God to remove, but God never did. Instead, God answered Paul’s deep desire for relief in another way. He didn’t remove the problem, but rather enabled Paul to live with it and to therefore grow in understanding because of it.
How many times do we think God doesn’t answer prayer because our circumstances don’t change? If we would look more closely, we would see that God took care of those circumstances in a different way – He enabled us to endure them.
Rahab was a Gentile female prostitute, but seeking for God. His grace was sufficient to save her physically and spiritually (Joshua 2) and place her in the genealogy of Jesus (Matthew 1:5). Noah, too, found God’s grace great enough to save him and his family from the world-wide flood that destroyed everyone else (Genesis 6-9). Lot didn’t deserve grace (Genesis 18-19) but God’s grace was great enough to deliver him from Sodom and Gomorrah.
The whole premise of this promise is that when we are facing something utterly beyond our ability, something that causes us to admit our helplessness and come to Him begging for help, He will always be there for us. It’s in times when we admit we need grace that we will recognize His grace in our lives. It’s when we are totally at our end that we most need and appreciate His help and provision. I think of this verse often when in India. I feel my weakness most clearly at those times, and in contrast I can recognize it is only His power that gets me through. There have been other times in my life where I was in that same totally helpless position and felt Him carrying me. God allows those times in all of our lives so we will turn to Him and acknowledge our need of Him. Have you been there? Are you there now?
We usually ask God to remove burdens and difficulties in our lives, but if He doesn’t remove them we should ask for His help to endure them instead. Often our prayers aren’t answered because we are telling God what to do when He has another plan for us. This is true in spiritual warfare as well. We can get discouraged when deliverance from demonic oppression doesn’t come quickly, but God promises enough grace to help us persevere.
Don’t always beg God to remove the difficulties in your life. Look for His grace instead. There is a saying, “sometimes the Lord calms the water, sometimes He calms the child.” You don’t even have to ask Him for grace, because He already promised it. Lean on His grace, let His grace carry you when your way is stormy. After all, His grace IS sufficient!
When has God’s grace been most evident in your life? Where can you see God’s grace working for you now?
cto Rev. Dr. JERRY SCHMOYER
Christian Training Organization
(India Outreach, Spiritual Warfare, Family Ministries, Counseling, World View)
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