G.R.A.C.E.S.

Fedor-Emelianenko-mma-ap

“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s People.” Ephesians 6:18

GRACES, God’s Rescue and Catching Emergency Services, You call and He is there. Today when reflecting on the sermon that was given, something came over me that I wanted to talk about. A point was made that many people fall to their knees when they finally realize that their problem is bigger than they are. God is the rescue team to sweep in and take care of all your worries and problems.

God is not a search and rescue team, he is much more than that. He is the one that gave us everything and sacrificed his son so that we may have life eternal. The Graces of God are not an acronym for what God can do for you. As I have said before the only thing worse than fair-weather friends are foul-weather friends. Is that how you view your relationship with God?

Think about the past month. Think about the prayers that you prayed the last month. Just take a moment to reflect on how you walked your life the past month. Was God your rescue team? Was God your Friend? Was God your loan officer? What was God to you last year through your actions and conversations with him?

When are we told to pray? In multiple times we are told to pray to God always and in all things. I like the verbiage in Ephesians the best, “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.” So pray with God always, I’m sure a lot of you are saying it’s hard enough to find 15 minutes to pray a day. I say to you that you can pray to God while you are doing anything else.

I mean really, we can’t give God 15 minutes? We are told to meditate on God’s word daily and pray to him at all times and we can’t carve out a smoke break? My pastor, Jeff Walling, pointed out something great today that really inspired these words, we can fall into a pit trap called Expectance with God. God has rescued us so many times that we come to expect it.

Our prayers become a joke to our own faith. We pray only because we need something or want something. God is faithful and he will give us that which we need, but like the Rolling Stones said, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you might find that you get what you need.” That is the Grace of God. He will take care of you and help you with all you need so long as you keep your faith in him and believe in him.

As you are new to Christ that fire burns bright, but as with all fires, if you do not kindle it… it will die out. How many of you go camping with a fire to keep warm at night? When do you realize that you have not tended to your fire properly? Well, you notice when you find yourself in the dark and cold. At that point you are pretty much building another fire instead of tending the fire.  Think about that for a moment. How often do you tend the fire within you that burns with the passion of Christ? How often should you tend that flame?

“Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations.” Psalm 90:1. Always and forever you have been our refuge, our holy place, our shelter in the storm. God has been there for you always, even when you were not walking his path. Your God leads you through the storms of life and is with you always. It doesn’t matter if you believe in him or not. He is there always and you can use him as the acronym of GRACES, or you can take it a step further and talk with him always.

God is right there. You need help with something, pray to him. You have a problem that you can’t figure out, pray to him. I can’t tell you how many times that I have been stuck on a problem working in IT and I have prayed for God to help me recall the answer or discover it or help me Google the right thing to help me resolve the issue.

God wants you to pray to him about everything and for every question that you have. He wants you to pray to him, which is just conversation by the way, when you can’t decide what to wear. He wants you to pray when you can’t find parking. He wants you to pray when you CAN find parking. He wants you to be close to him and the only way to do that is to draw closer to him. How can you be friends with someone that you never talk to? You can’t.

Prayer is not a joke. We see figures in sports that people joke about, but some of these people are Godly men and women that are doing their part to share their love of Christ. I’m a big fan of MMA and people say so many jokes that when you win you thank your family, friends, trainers and don’t forget to thank God no matter if you believe in him or not. It has been said in other sports too, but in MMA there are some Godly men and women that beat the crap out of other people for a living. So many times I hear the joke, “I thought they are supposed to turn the other cheek not strike back.”

Why can’t warriors be Christian? Someone might want to get a memo to Joshua, David, Elijah, and Samson. I don’t think they heard God when the image of Christian or followers of God were supposed to be weak. You might want to tell the men and women that serve their militaries to protect and serve those that they care for that they are supposed to stand down and allow what evils may exists destroy what they care for. You might want to tell Fedor Emelianko and Chris Weidman that they can’t punch anyone anymore.

It is no joke that God uses might to make things happen to glorify him. That does not mean that Might is Right or that might is the only way. We as Christians are told that the only thing we can do is roll over and show mercy, but that is not the totality of the subject. We must stand firm in what we believe and for the Grace of God. If you have a testimony of what God has given you or of how God pulled you out of something there was no way out of, then you know the fire that I am speaking.

God is worth fighting for, but fight how God wishes you to fight. Maybe your fight for Christ should start in your own mind. Fight yourself with prayer to help draw closer to God and break habits that keep you from his glory. Fight to get yourself out of depression. Fight to stand in his glory and majesty. In all things at all times pray for God’s wisdom and understanding. Allow God to get that extra rep in the gym or that extra mile. Call to God to help resolve this angry person’s problem that is screaming at you. Call to God to help you do all that you can to better your position in life.

here is your battle and how will you turn GRACES into Grace?

“Samson went down to Timnah together with his father and mother. As they approached the vineyards of Timnah, suddenly a young lion came roaring toward him. The Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon him so that he tore the lion apart with his bare hands as he might have torn a young goat. But he told neither his father nor his mother was he had done.” Judges 14:5-6

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