ODJ: But Grace . . .

March 6, 2018 

READ: Romans 5:18-21 

Now God’s wonderful grace rules instead, giving us right standing with God and resulting in eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (v.21).

My friend Tracy was returning on a bus from a pro- life rally. Her three boys accompanied her. A conversation took place on that bus ride that will stay with Tracy for the rest of her life.

Although the boys knew their mum had an abortion before they were born, her youngest, then seven years old, was just beginning to understand what abortion is, and it troubled him. So he asked her, “Is that what you really did, Mum?” She answered quietly: “Yes.”

Then her middle son, age nine, said, “Wow, Mum, what if that had been one of us?”

That’s when her oldest son shook her world. “But it was,” he said.

Tracy had already asked God to forgive her, but she hadn’t seen this coming. Yet she says, “That moment became precious to me. Out of my spirit came the reminder that I had been washed clean by the blood of Jesus. Not merely forgiven, but I had been made to be the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.”

Tracy later wrote about that moment on the bus: “My failure was laid bare before my innocent children. I saw the pain in their eyes and felt it in the weight of the silence between us. But grace.”

Without God’s grace, we’re all in the same lost, unhappy situation. Paul wrote, “Adam’s sin brings condemnation for everyone.” But he didn’t stop there. “Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone” (Romans 5:18).

By grace, Tracy’s life has become a living picture of the gospel of Jesus. All of us who follow Christ as our Lord and our Rescuer can share the same grace that she now shares with others. We’re all in this together, enjoying the beautiful bond of grace and love that flows from God Himself (v.21).

—Tim Gustafson

365-day plan: Joshua 24:1-31

Reflect on Gal. 6:1-3 and its guidelines for how to approach others who need help. 
God promises forgiveness. Do you trust Him for it? What does God’s grace mean to you?