Maybe you have an approach to God that can be stated like this: “If I just work hard enough and do enough good in my life, God will approve of me.” You are attempting to negotiate good works for God’s acceptance. 

God accepts you! But you are having trouble accepting God’s love.

 

You may have difficulty accepting the mercy of God because you have never fully received God’s love. Or you may be so accustomed to the give-and-take, buy-and-sell nature of our culture that you assume you can deal with God the same way: “You do this for me, and I’ll do this for you.” God does not operate according to that human principle.


God’s principle is one of total acceptance of you when you ask for His forgiveness and seek to do His will. If He desires to change something in your life -always for your good and for your eventual blessing- His chastisement is patient and kind (never beyond your ability to bear). and His love is constant (never withheld or removed). You cannot negotiate your way around God’s will. Stop trying. 


What should be your approach instead of negotiating?


–Trust God. Ask Him for what you desire, and then trust Him to answer your prayer according to His wisdom and infinite provision. 


We base so much of our acceptance on the world’s standards rather than God’s grace. 


In 1900, the Daughters of the American Revolution [DAR] elected social reformer Jane Addams to honorary membership. But Addams’ antiwar stance during World War I and her insistence that even subversives had a right to trial by due process caused them to expel her. She commented that she had thought her election to the DAR was for life, but now knew it was for good behavior.


Aren’t you glad that God does not operate that way? Ephesians 1:6-7 says, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he had made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.


I encourage you to put these verse to memory. I would also encourage you to read Zechariah 3:1-4, and always understand our acceptance from God is not based on what works we do but the work done by Jesus on Calvary.

written by Dr. Mike Rouse

used by permission

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