The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"Before They Call"
Part 4 - Existing Grace, Experiential Grace
We continue our consideration of the Apostle Paul receiving grace when God chose not to remove Paul's thorn in the flesh.
(II Corinthians 12)
One of the best intercessions we can offer in prayer for each other involves the abundance of grace we already possess in Christ.
"I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of His calling, and what the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power to usward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power" (Ephesians 1:15-19).
In Christ, we already have everything we need regarding hope, spiritual riches, and "the working of His mighty power." This supplies far more than enough to maintain our hearts in peace as we find that which we already have in the Lord Jesus. Such grace also bears limited implications for earthly needs, although God's present emphasis involves our hearts. Note that the Apostle Paul taught that God has blessed us with "all spiritual blessings in Heavenly places in Christ" (Ephesians 1:3; emphasis added). We do not find such promise for physical abundance in the New Testament because the Lord's working to conform us to the spiritual and moral image of Christ requires that we suffer need as well as enjoy blessing.
"Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness thro1ugh manifold temptations, that the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ" (I Peter :6-7).
We presently possess all grace in Christ necessary to enable a full heart, even when we experience limitations or emptiness regarding outward needs. This is the glory of the Lord Jesus, that He can reveal His abundance of spirit where it seems it could not be. Indeed, the Prince of peace who slept during a violent storm on the Sea of Galilee now rests within our hearts during the tempests of our lives (Mark 4:35-41). He knows He can lead us through whatever challenge we will face in this lifetime. His presence is more than enough to reveal peace within us as we trust Him. However, we must believe that such peace is not only possible. It is already present in our hearts through the indwelling Holy Spirit. The Prince is there, or rather, He is here. We will be tempted to believe otherwise, but the truth abides. Abundance grace for our hearts is ours to receive not as a matter of possession. That we already have. The matter involves recognition and affirmation of such freely given supply in Christ. The choice is ours, and the more we affirm existing grace in our hearts, the more we will realize experiential grace therein.
"Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God which passeth all understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."
"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose minds is stayed on Thee, because he trusteth in Thee."
Weekly Memory Verse
"Not unto us, o Lord, not unto us, but unto Thy name give glory, for Thy mercy and Thy truth's sake."