Sustained By Grace

Psalm 55:22 says, “Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.” The Hebrew word for ‘sustain’ means: to maintain, nourish, provide food, bear, hold up, protect, support, defend; to supply the means necessary for living. God’s grace is abundantly available until the moment pride steps in. 

Our flesh does not like to be needy. It rushes in through a spirit of independence. Many years ago, my mom said, “Marilyn, you are the most independent person I know!” That was not a compliment, but it was the reality of who I was at that time. It took many hard trials to teach me how dependent I am on the Lord. John 15:5 is a governor over my heart. It says, “….without Me you can do nothing.”

Nothing means not one thing. The Lord has given us a marvelous brain. When we learn something, it remembers it so that we do not have to think about what we are doing. Think back to when you first learned how to tie your shoes. I remember when I first was learning how to drive my parents stick shift Hudson. It took utmost concentration to remember all the components needed to make the clutch work and shift without grinding gears.

We did not come to salvation on our own merit. We were drawn by the Father to Jesus. Remember, we were alienated from the life of God. We had to learn the truth that we were bound in sin. There was no way of escape from God’s wrath to come. Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

I like to remember Titus 3:5. It says, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.” After salvation, we need to continue to be washed. Why? We have a propensity to do things in our own way and in our own strength. 

Here is a great verse about grace. Though it is in the context of finances, we can apply it to our lives. 2 Corinthians 9:8 says, “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always have all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.” Did you notice the word ‘all’ is used three times? All grace, all sufficiency, and all things denotes a huge spectrum that has no beginning nor an ending.

Verse 15 says, “Thanks be to God, for His indescribable gift!” That is exactly what grace is~a gift. We don’t do anything to earn it. It is ours at the moment of our rebirth. We are saved by His grace, and therefore we live out our progressive sanctification through grace. We don’t ‘do’ anything but receive it. Abiding is not a Christian discipline, it is a wonderful vital union with the Lord through intimate communion through His word.

As we daily read His word for understanding, the Holy Spirit is present to dispense the grace we need to apply His truths to our lives. We cannot bring any inner change through self-effort. Inner transformation comes as we renew our mind through Scripture, and as we gaze upon the Lord. James 1:21 says, “…receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your soul.” Meekness is absence of pride.

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