I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!
I am watching a touching video shared by a Facebook friend when I notice that my husband, Danny, has drawn close to watch with me. As I turn toward him, out of the corner of my eye, I spy a wrapped package sitting on our dining room table. It is my son, Daniel's, birthday today, and my first reaction is to assume Danny has added yet another gift to those we've already given him.
I am wrong.
When I inquire about it, Danny says, "It's something for you."
"But it's not my birthday," I counter. "Why a gift?"
"Why not?" Danny asks. "Can't I give you something just because?"
The tears already generated by the moving video no flow even more freely at the unexpected delight and anticipation of what could possibly lay beneath the festive wrappings. But it's the note from Danny that I read before opening the gift that frees the flood gates.
You will say that I shouldn't have bought you anything, you don't need this, but it isn't about any of that stuff. It's about thanking you for all you have done since last March. You gave up vacation, you tended to me in two hospitals, you drove my car down a four-lane highway, you stayed by yourself under duress in a strange city in a strange hotel, you were brave during surgeries, you were my doctor and gave me meds. You were there through everything, so yes, you deserve this. I love you so much for who you are every day. I'll explain the gift when you open it, but actually you DO need this and deserve this. I couldn't find a card that said what I wanted to, so better to simply write this note.
Best of my love,
Okay, I'm breaking the Guiness Book of World Records in how many tissues can be used up in a minute. How could I have possibly done, with God's help all the way, anything less than what I did for this man I love and treasure? There is no gift necessary. None deserved! What can this gift possibly be?
Time to open and discover . . .
A Canon camera!!! Lightweight, easy to use from the get-go, and incredible zoom lens power for all those wildlife shots I've been longing to take! What a welcome reprieve from my limited phone camera!
An undeserved gift, no matter what Danny declares.
And God's grace is like that.
It is not a gift to be set aside, but opened joyfully and expectantly.
It is not a gift to be taken lightly, because we know the sacrificial gift of Christ Jesus who love us and offered Himself for us, once and for all, without reservation.
It's a gift that cannot be earned, no matter how hard we try.
And no law, nor effort on our part, can alter its redeeming power.
Will you accept God's gift of grace?
And know it is by grace alone that you are saved.
The zoom lens proves to be absolutely amazing! Of course, Racer informs me, on no uncertain terms, that our backyard squirrels should be the subjects of my first photo shoot. Enjoy!