I have so much in my heart today … so much reflection on the last couple of weeks. As I sit at my laptop, I think of the many things I could “blog” about today. The past days have been filled with many emotions because several different events are taking place in the life of our family . . . Nat coming home soon for the summer, our recent trip to Indo, the birthdays of our oldest (turning 25) and youngest (turning 16) will be celebrated in about a week, and then there’s Buddy’s future . . .
As I try to implement the truths of my reading (from our book for my small group – Because He Loves Me), while also taking in all of these memories as well as the thoughts of what the future may hold, I am praying that God will use what I’m learning to impact the moment by moment happenings in my life.
This week in our study, we are thinking about our inheritance in Christ. TBH (to be honest), this isn’t something I consistently dwell on. And I have decided that I’m missing something because of the absence of consistently recognizing and relishing my inheritance. Peter greets his readers by wishing for them “grace and peace in full measure!” Then he goes on to encourage them to remember:
“By His great mercy He gave us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, that is, into an inheritance imperishable, undefiled, and unfading. It is reserved in heaven for you, who by God’s power are protected through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. This brings you great joy, although you may have to suffer for a short time in various trials . . .You have not seen Him, but you love Him. You do not see Him now but you believe in Him, and so you rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, because you are attaining the goal of your faith—the salvation of your souls.”
There is much more talk these days in Christian circles about preaching the gospel to ourselves. I am one of the ones reminding myself and others to do so. I was introduced to the phrase (“preach the gospel to yourself”) years ago while reading a book by Jerry Bridges. In spending some time this week thinking through what I’m presently reading and thinking back on the last weeks, I realized that it all ties together. My inheritance in Christ is based on the gospel becoming the center of my life daily . . . That is, the life and death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is my daily reality – as well as my future reality.
Grace and peace. The gospel in two words that can’t be separated. By His great mercy (grace), I have hope and joy (peace).
So in light of that good news I share the more difficult news. It is almost sure that we will be saying “goodbye” to Buddy very soon. Today, the couple who kept him while we were gone to Indonesia came to talk to us about their desire to adopt him. They didn’t have to do that, but they were looking for our input and our “approval” I think. They are a very sweet couple who I believe would be wonderful parents for this little fella who has become such a part of our family. I will share more in the coming days about this (when we have more to share), but for now I am thankful, because Jesus loves me so. I have this sure hope.
Today, I preach the gospel of grace and peace into my life.
He formed my heart.
my life was in His hands.
He calls me His own.