As God's fellow workers we urge you not to receive God's grace in vain. For he says, "In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you." I tell you, now is the time of God's favor, now is the day of salvation. – 2 Corinthians 6:1,2
Have you ever received a gift that you never bothered to open, or, if you did, you never really put it to use? If so, then you’ve received a gift in vain. It is of no real value to you and has not fulfilled the intended purpose of the giver. Over the years I’ve heard many stories of the proverbial Christmas Fruit Cake gifts. I’ll have to admit that I’m not a fan of fruit cake either, and I can recall a couple of times receiving one of those cakes only to pass it along to someone else or find it still sitting in the refrigerator months later. If you give me one, that’s a gift I will always likely receive in vain!
Paul urges the church not to be guilty of receiving God’s gift of grace in the same way as one might receive the fruit cake. God has shown us great favor in Christ and we ought not take it lightly or vainly. This gift is intended for our eager reception and employment. The preceding chapter 5 gives us more insight on how we ought to receive this gift of grace and it’s highlighted in verse 15 – “And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.” If we continue to live for ourselves after we have received the gift of grace from God, then we have received God’s grace in vain! Paul says, now, while God favors us, eagerly accept His free gift and make the most use of it by living for Him who died for you. We are new creations with new purpose for life. So, don’t just be another fruit cake for God this Christmas!
- Give thanks to God for His wonderful gift of salvation & eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
- Join our 6:00pm Thursday night prayer team (in prayer if not in person).
- Ask God to give you a clear understanding of how precious this amazing grace really is.
- Pray for the Good News families of the week: Dave & Sarah George (Nathanael, Rachael), Matt & Megan George (?), Pete & Laurel George (Annabeth, Luke)
- Ask God to help you understand the seriousness of receiving His gift in vain.
- Thank God for the favor He has shown to sinners, and determine to live for Him who died for you!
- Join in with our Sunday prayer services to pray for God’s presence and blessing.
- Take time in your living today to demonstrate that you have not received God’s gift in vain.
- Attend “In Touch” Prayer meeting at GNCC at 10:30am or join in prayer at that time.
- Determine not to be just another fruitcake for God! Ask Him to help you live out of the grace He gives.
- Declare this Good News of the great joy, that we have been favored with a gift from God!
Prayer Challenge: If you have received God’s gift of salvation and grace, remember how precious and undeserving a gift it truly is. Recognize the urgency of the admonition to no longer live for yourself, but set yourself to the high calling of living for Him who died for you. Pray that other believers will recognize the danger of receiving the gift of God in vain.