Saved By Grace; Follow By Choice

     In many Christian circles, the debate about conversion centers around the moment of belief and our actions, and the holy mystery surrounding us. While I know that we have nothing to do with the gift, we have agency in responding. Do not get me wrong; I do not mean that our salvation depends on our works. I propose that both parties, God, and an individual enter a covenant with one another, each pledging to fulfill their end of the bargain. We must step forward and accept the present which reaches out to us.

     A gift can remain on a table forever and be useless to everyone that walks near us. What good is an offering if not held and put to good use? “Faith is dead when it doesn’t result in faithful activity” (Jm. 2:17 CEB). We must take ownership of our part of the bargain. We know that no human can manifest the gift of salvation. All attempts to duplicate the work of God are void and nil. True conversion combines the giver (God) and the receiver (humanity). Our dependence on the Divine demonstrates our commitment to the One who lavishly shares the reality of eternal life.

     Through this season of Advent, let us remain aware of the gift giver. Let us demonstrate our commitment to live and follow the love that flows from the Creator, who gave us life. This renewal of hope is a season of giving, but also, we celebrate a season of living. Old things pass away, and we rise from the darkness and into the arms of love. We take a leap of faith, confident that love will lead us home.

Published by joekmac

I am a pastor in the United Methodist Tradition. I am the Pastor of First United Methodist Church of Belen in the New Mexico Annual Conference. I am married to Cazandra and have two sons with hemophilia.

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