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Tuesday, March 8, 2016
God’s Grace Gives You a Reason to Celebrate BY RICK WARREN — MARCH 8, Tuesday
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9 NIV)
You can’t earn grace. You can’t work for it. You don’t deserve it.
The Bible teaches, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9 NIV).
You can only receive grace by faith. That’s good news! That’s a reason to celebrate.
The Bible is full of stories illustrating God’s grace. Maybe the most familiar of those stories is of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15. As you might remember, the father in this story has two boys. One day the younger one says, “Dad, I’m splitting. I want my half of the family inheritance right now so I can leave.” So he takes half of the family inheritance and moves to a foreign country. He then wastes his life on wine, women, and song. After a few months, he realizes he has blown everything he has. He ends up in a pig trough feeding pigs. Flat on his back, he’s thinking, “What am I doing here? I know I blew it. It’s all my own fault, but the people who work for my dad as servants live better than this.”
He decides to go home and tell his father, “Dad, I know I blew it. I admit it. I wasted half the family inheritance. I do not deserve to be called your son. But just hire me as a servant, and I’ll work for you the rest of my life because even your servants live better than I’m living now.”
Yet the Bible says the father was both loving and gracious toward his son. When he saw the son coming home from a long distance, he ran out to meet him with a giant bear hug. Then the father threw a party for his wayward son.
That’s how God responds to us when we accept the grace of God. The angels in Heaven have a party every time one person responds to the grace of God.
When we accept the grace of God into our lives, it means our past is forgiven, we have a purpose for living, and we have an eternal home in Heaven.
That’s good news. That’s a reason to party!
You can learn more about how to accept God’s grace and have a real reason to party at my website, rickwarren.org. When you’re there, click on the “Know God” tab. You’ll find a video and a guide explaining what it means to trust your life to Jesus. Let me know if you pray along with the prayer by writing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.