But as for you, you were dead in your sins. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ. God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God—not the result of works, so that no one may boast.
We hear a lot about grace, but what is it exactly? For sure, it is a gift. But there are different kinds of gifts. All gifts are free but not all gifts will change your life. At a women’s luncheon I attended, I ended up winning the door prize. It was some Mary Kay skin care in a nifty little bag. I didn’t pay for it or earn it—I was just lucky enough to get it. But will it change my life?
Obviously not. While it is nice, it is not indispensable nor is it costly. No offense to Mary Kay here, but even if I didn’t have “After Sun Replenishing Gel,” and I wanted it, I could just call up my Mary Kay rep and buy some.
But what if I was a poor person who had a dire health issue and if I didn’t have a particular surgery, I would die. The only doctor who could treat me is far away and the surgery is expensive. And you came up with the money I needed. You did it out of the goodness of your heart and you made it clear I didn’t owe you a thing. Pretty incredible, right!? Now that’s the kind of gift that would change my life and I would be forever grateful to you.
What is important is not the “freeness” of the gift, but whether or not it is indispensable and whether or not it is costly.
God’s grace is indispensable. We are told that we are dead in our sins. We don’t need pills or rest or exercise, we need a resurrection. And we can contribute nothing to that. To fully understand the grace of God, we are invited to see that we are not just spiritually sick, we are spiritually bankrupt and have nothing to pay back the debt that sin cost.
But God’s grace is not only indispensable—it is also costly. This is what God does about our sin: he made us alive with Christ, raised us up with Christ and seated us in the heavenly realms. Did you catch that each of those things is in the past tense? What it is saying is that when you trust in God’s grace, you become so united with Christ that these things have already happened.
Isn’t that wonderful news!?
But here’s the catch. If we are so united with Christ that we get everything he deserves, that means that he is so united with us that he got everything we deserve. That’s what Easter is all about.
God’s grace is indispensable. God’s grace is costly. And when you put together those two things, and you get it, then God’s grace becomes transformative. You are a new creation.
Being Human: May you be utterly amazed and humbled and blown away by the grace of God. It was free for us, but it cost God everything.