“You must recognize that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land because you are good, for you are not—you are a stubborn people.” – Deuteronomy 9:6
I had just left a Christian school chapel service where over a dozen students had come to know Christ as Lord and Savior. With guitar in hand, I rounded the corner feeling pretty good about myself and what I had just witnessed.
A preschooler, leaning against the wall, called to me, “Hey, mister. Is that a guitar you got there?” I responded, “Yes it is. Would you like to see it?” The little boy shook his head and said, “Naw, my granddaddy said that anyone who plays the guitar ain’t worth five cents!” Wow…instant reality!
Israel, in the book of Deuteronomy, was blessed beyond their worthiness…that’s grace. In essence, God was saying, “I am doing this because I am good, not because you are!” Sound familiar—it should.
It is so easy for us to get full of ourselves and begin to believe that we are more than we actually are. We may be sold on ourselves, but God’s not buying it! We are not “all that.”
God has lavished upon us His favor and such opportunity that we will never deserve. Paul told the Romans, “When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation” (Romans 5:6-9).
God has been so good to us. With all our failures and all our faults, he still loves us and reaches out to us with an everlasting love. His forgiveness knows no bounds—He casts our sins as far as the east is from the west and remembers them no more! His patience is enduring.
What should be my response in light of all that the Lord has done for me? Even in hardship, heartbreak and trial, I choose to stand with David as he wrote: “What can I offer the Lord for all he has done for me? I will lift up the cup of salvation and praise the Lord’s name for saving me. I will keep my promises to the Lord in the presence of all his people” (Psalm 116:12-14). I choose to sing…even in sorrow:
“When I survey the wondrous cross,
On which the Prince of Glory died.
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride.
Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were a present far too small.
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.”
He is all that! I am not!