Overwhelming Grace

I made a mistake recently by not hearkening to the Shepherd’s voice and I came under heavy self condemnation, even after confessing my error before God who promised to forgive me and wipe my slate completely clean. I reflected on this and I realized that yes, I deal with an enemy called the accuser, but I have underestimated God’s grace and wisdom.

We have a Father who sent His only begotten son to die in our stead before we had a clue about anything and even though humanly speaking, we were hopeless. It was a sacrifice that overwhelms every sin, every mistake, every error – the sacrifice of God Himself. That is why no case is hopeless. If God’s grace overwhelmed our sins before we came to Christ, how much more will His grace continue to overwhelm our sins after coming to Christ? We have a God who is so creative for want of a better word, that He is able to use even our failures to produce success, our defeats to produce victories, turn our mistakes into stepping stones for greater triumphs.

We underestimate the grace and wisdom of God when we think our past or future failures, mistakes and sins can stop Him or stop us. We have God’s guarantee of forgiveness if we confess our sins but it is hard at times for us to imagine that God is able to stop our past failings from inhibiting us in future. It is very true that we reap what we sow and there are consequences to our past actions but like Kenneth Copeland says, in God, there is possibility of “Supernatural crop failure.”

Your sins do not have to stop you. The grace that saved us, the grace wherein we stand truly overwhelms our sins, whatever they may be, before or after we come to Christ. I think Matthew Henry framed it beautifully when He said, “The plaster is wider than the wound and more healing than the wound is killing.” This is the grace of our Lord, this is the good news and this is what is hard for us to accept in a world where you pay dearly for every error, and mistakes can come back to haunt you years after.

I think it is important to know that God does not only wipe our slates clean when we come to Christ. He wipes it clean if we sin or make mistakes even after coming to Christ. In addition, our very mistakes, even our sins can become raw material in His hands. He is that abundant in love and in wisdom. Far from giving us license to sin, it gives us a reason to live our lives to please Him as we Pursue Him to Heaven while also showing us the unfathomable depths of God’s love as well as His many-sided wisdom “in all its infinite variety and innumerable aspects.”

In practice, when the potter uses the lumps in the clay to produce beauty in our lives, He does it so beautifully and gracefully that we think it was part of His plans to start with. I do not think so. I think a truly creative person brings beauty out of undesirable situations. Who is more creative than our Father the Creator?

Have you sinned, fallen or made a mistake lately or in the past? Your failings do not have to stop you. They can even become stepping stones to greater triumphs. If your confessed sins do not affect you in eternity, why would they affect you in the present? If you allow them to affect you here though, they will. Things happen to us here according to our belief or non-belief and it may look as though God were vindictive when it is only a matter of our unbelief.

The poem, Compost Springs Life, by Histiara captures how God deals with our filth and our messes. With her permission, I reproduce it here but please visit her site. She has a way of saying in very few words what I write an epistle on.

Compost springs life,
and the delicate petals,
must seek life,
from the dung,
that men oft trample upon.

Mysterious in the dark,
concealed in the stench,
are the tender nuggets,
that spring forth,
the scent of paradise.

7 thoughts on “Overwhelming Grace

  1. Thanks Tolu, I like what you said when you wrote, "our very mistakes, even our sins can become raw material in His hands."It reminded me of my brother-in-law who is a potter. He'd be busy making something, then he'd stand back and have a look at it. If he wasn't happy with what he saw or if he saw some imperfection he would crush it back into a lump and start all over again – until he was happy! The he fired it. I too am so grateful that the Lord willingly forgives me. His grace is indeed sufficient for me. Blessing Tolu.

  2. I've always wondered how it's possible for us to move on after we've seriously erred somewhere. I'm so big on sin and consequence and unfortunately the person who gets the brunt of my punishment is me. I get it that God forgives but it's moving past forgiving ourselves that's the problem. But remembering that he is a creative God who can turn our mess into something beautiful, helps to deal with the inabilit to move past the errors. So true: the vandals is way bigger than the wound.

  3. @Paul, yes I underestimated God's grace. His grace supersedes all our wrongs, past, present and future. He is the Potter, who has to deal with clay that has a mind of its own but still He is able to create beauty out of our lives as we learn to submit.I am grateful too that He forgives me and wipes my slate clean, treats me as though I never sinned, not only before I became His child but even now, when I slip.Thank you for stopping by again.

  4. @Bunmi, I feel you. Forgiveness is easier for us. We do not get how God can stop the consequences of our sins. But I am realizing that His grace is such that our confessed sins, our errors, our mistakes, our failures can actually be used by Him for His purpose in our lives because He is Love and because He is super Creative. Hey, he turned an earth without form and void into a paradise. He will do no less to a yielded life.Jesus' blood, God's blood, cancels everything standing against us, including consequences. If we still had to suffer the consequences of our sins, are we really forgiven? I think that Matthew Henry quote is one of the most profound that there is – "The plaster is wider than the wound and more healing than the wound is killing."You must be using an I-phone – too intuitive for its own good.

  5. Thanks for this timely piece Tolu. I've been doing a character study of Job with my girlfriend for the past month and he struggled big time with this issue. If only we could get a deeper revelation of the overwhelming love and grace made available to us through the finished work of the cross. You're right in pointing out that the society we live in contributes towards shaping our thought process. We seem to think we deserve punishment each time we err and the thin line between conviction by the Spirit and condemnation by the accuser becomes dangerously blurred. The quote by Matthew Henry just hits the nail on the head. Wherever sin abounds, grace abounds even more!

  6. Setwatchman, thank you for your contribution to this. This issue is a very delicate one for sure because it can easily be twisted even as Paul said, the abundance of grace does not mean we should continue in sin. But the abundance of grace shows the heart of our Father. He is Love and whenever we are out of fellowship, He wants us restored quicker than we realize. Also, our mistakes are raw material in his hands. Realizing how much He loves us should prompt us to Love Him in return.One example I never get over is the woman caught in adultery. Jesus, Holy Holy Holy, did not condemn her. It was sinful men that wanted to kill her. God wanted to restore her. Peter is another example. Jesus did not condemn him for denying the savior. Jesus loved Him, we have no record of the incident being mentioned.Thank you again Setwatchman.

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