June 26

“For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?” Romans 3:3

I think that I can trace every scrap of sorrow in my life to simple unbelief. How could I be anything but quite happy if I believed always that all the past is forgiven, and all the present furnished with power, and all the future bright with hope because of the same abiding facts which do not change with my mood, do not stumble because I totter and stagger at the promise through unbelief, but stand firm and clear with their peaks of pearl cleaving the air of Eternity, and the bases of their hills rooted unfathomably in the Rock of God. Mont Blanc does not become a phantom or a mist because a climber grows dizzy on its side. (Streams in the Desert)

“My deepest awareness of myself is that I am deeply loved by Jesus Christ and I have done nothing to earn it or deserve it.” (The Ragamuffin Gospel – Brennan Manning)

A former staff member from my time as a pastor wrote to me yesterday to say that he wishes he had read The Ragamuffin Gospel when I gave to him a dog eared copy years ago. I responded by saying, “I will spend the remainder of my life trying to get my mind and heart around Christ’s relentless love.” I will indeed invest the time I have left attempting to apprehend grace. The Father’s unfathomable forgiveness pertains not only to pardon from sin, but to every breath I take. Since it is true that I cannot do anything to convince God to love me more, and that there is nothing I can do to cause God to love me less, I stand before Him irrevocably clean and irreversibly a son. I am, in a word, free. Responsibility accompanies freedom, but there are no strings attached to grace. We are everything the Father wants in a child, simply because He imparts the righteousness of His Son to every son and daughter of grace.

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