Encouragement Letters

Sustaining Grace

originally published April 2017

Good morning, Friend,

When Nehemiah was ready to embark on his huge mission from the Lord, he didn't lack confidence because he knew that the Lord had called him to the assignment. He also knew that the Lord would give him the strength and wisdom to accomplish the work. Here's how he stated it two times: "the gracious hand of my God was upon me" (Nehemiah 2:8, 18). That’s a wonderful phrase. "The gracious hand of my God was upon me." He experienced God's grace in his life, as we observe it throughout the book of Nehemiah.

 Annie Johnson Flint richly wrote about God's grace in her hymn, He Giveth More Grace.  

 He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,

  He sendeth more strength when the labors increase;

  To added affliction He addeth His mercy,

  To multiplied trials, His multiplied peace.   

 

  When we have exhausted our store of endurance,

  When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,

  When we reach the end of our hoarded resources

  Our Father’s full giving is only begun.

 

  His love has no limit, His grace has no measure,

  His power no boundary known unto men;

  For out of His infinite riches in Jesus

  He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.  

The grace of God is one of His attributes frequently mentioned in both the Old and New Testaments. The Bible mentions several categories where His grace is demonstrated. There is Saving Grace, which is evidenced at the time of conversion. This is in striking contrast to our efforts. There is Forgiving Grace, always available to cover our sins . . . past, present, and future. There is also Sustaining Grace to see us through the tough times of life. 

This SUSTAINING GRACE is a gift from God whenever we need it.

• "Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need" (Hebrews 4:16).

• As Paul spoke to God requesting the removal of his "thorn in the flesh," God responded by saying, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness" (2 Corinthians 12:9). At that moment, Paul's response to God was, "Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong" (12:9-10).

• "The Lord longs to be gracious to you" (Isaiah 30:18). There is no need for you and me to stumble our way through the tough times of life. His grace is available to us. You and I often do not have what it takes to make it through tough times. I don't mean that as an indictment. It is simply the truth. God never meant for you and me to "tough it out"’ in our own strength. As stated above, The Lord longs to be gracious to us.

• Nehemiah found it to be true.

• Paul found it to be true.

So can I. So can you. Experience the truth of the hymn quoted above. And you will see, indeed, that God gives grace again and again.

Be encouraged,

Lareau Lindquist

Founder, Senior Associate 

 

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