‘You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.’ 2 Timothy 2.1
Strength is usually something that we measure in terms of our own personal ability – how much weight we can lift or how far we can run. It would be tempting to think of strong Christians in similar terms, such as how many converts they make and how many people they witness to in a particular day. To be strong in grace, however, puts the idea of strength into a totally different context.
Grace is precisely what we cannot achieve by our own efforts. It is what God freely gives us because of his love for us. When we are commanded to be strong in grace, it is precisely the opposite of human strength; it is a deliberate turning away from our own efforts and a seeking to draw on another source of strength.
The Bible speaks about the effects of grace in different ways. It is by grace that we resist temptation (Titus 2.12) and by grace that we receive help and mercy when we need it (Hebrews 4.16).
As followers of the God of grace, our calling is not so much to wonder what can be achieved today by our own efforts, but instead to draw on the amazing resources of heaven and then really see what can be achieved. As you look to the day ahead, what is it you cannot do in your own strength? Hold this before God, and seek the strength of his grace for it.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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