In Trials on
2 January, 2013

“You didn’t deserve that.”

restaurant-person-woman-coffee

Just a few weeks ago I had lunch with a friend of mine, whom I hadn’t seen in more than a year. While catching up on new things that have happened in our lives since we last saw one another, I had an opportunity to share with her the amazing work God did in my life last year. {Wow. Pause. “Last year” – that’s a new one! I love how time changes the way we describe things.}

Anyway, after I finished telling her about my trials and consequent victories of 2012, she said to me, “You didn’t deserve that.” And bless her heart! She meant well, and I don’t think she’s the only one who has ever looked at a sad situation and said that statement. Don’t we all shake our heads at tragedies and say, “That shouldn’t have happened”?

Although I nodded in earnest at her statement and inwardly agreed, I realized later that, in fact, the statement “I didn’t deserve that” wasn’t quite true. I began to subsequently recognize the truth about what I really do deserve, which can be summed up in three sharp words:

Punishment. Death. Hell.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God… {Romans 3:23}

My three words may savor strongly of hopelessness, but the truth is that apart from God’s mercy, I am a wretched sinner. Without Him, I have nothing and I am nothing. But because of Christ alone, I am saved from eternal damnation. Because of Christ alone, I have real hope. Because of Christ alone, I have joy unspeakable!

But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. {Romans 5:8}

And would you just look at how Romans 3:23 from a few paragraphs back beautifully continues onto verses 24 and 25?

…and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. {Romans 3:24-25a}

So, yes, what I do deserve is death. But I am alive in Christ, and there is just as much hope for you as there is for me. It simply comes by accepting God’s gift of His Son. It comes by repentance. It comes through faith. And it comes because of His great love for us and mercy on us.

I pray we would never lose sight of that, even when the thunder rolls and the lightning strikes, and we are tempted to feel entitled to an easy life.

Jen

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2 Comments

  • Rob Barkman

    Jennifer,

    Wondreful much needed positng for us all. Thank you for the insight into what our Lord has done for us. Wonderful blog may the Lord continue to bless you as you seek to serve Him through your surrendered pen!

    10 January, 2013 at 10:35 am Reply
    • Jennifer Hope

      Thank you so much! I love your term “surrendered pen”!

      10 January, 2013 at 12:34 pm Reply

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