30 Days of Gratitude – Day 24 Legalism & Grace

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Today I’m grateful for the grace that God shows me when it comes to my legalism.  This is something that God has been working on for many decades and I’m pleased to say that I’ve come quite a way, I’m also sad to say that I have a long way to go.

It saddens me when I read things like Galatians 5:2-4:

Mark my words!  I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all.  3Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law.  4You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace.

Bare with me here, I see my legalism as a form of circumcision because it obligates me to the law and negates the grace of Christ and stand in the way of my relationship with Him.  For those reasons I take firm warning from Galatians 5:2-4.

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As much as I struggle with legalism it breaks my heart that I’ve allowed it to come between me and my Lord Jesus Christ.  I long for a relationship with Him and the last thing that I want to do is fall away from grace.  I want what Galatians 5:1 states:

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.  Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by the yoke of slavery.

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I want the freedom that Christ offers and I don’t want to allow myself to be burdened again by the yoke of slavery, mainly my legalism.  So I ask God to continue working with me in this area of bondage.  That He make me keenly aware of when I’m struggling with it.  So that I might ask forgiveness and wisdom in how to get out of it.

I’m grateful that God is gracious with me in this area of sin.  I know He wants to see progress in this as much or more than I do.  He is so loving and patient with me when I come to a verse that seems one I can perch my legalistic hat on.  These days knowing His grace those verses cause me confusion, with questions like, “How can that be when God says?” or  “I don’t understand wouldn’t that mean?”  When I hear those questions I can usually assume I’m struggling with that ugly old friend legalism.  Being that I want to rid myself of that friend and things still get caught in my head, I seek wise counsel and that helps to quench the old demon.

When I’m in the midst of legalism my relationship with Christ suffers but if I ask the Holy Spirit to help me find the truth to find grace my relationship with Christ is restored.

God is gracious with us as long as we are earnestly seeking His will.  He is patient and long suffering for our sake.  What an awesome God we serve.

Joy – A Fellow Sojourner & A Woman After God’s Own Heart!

Quote for Today – Shake it Off!

“When Paul was shipwrecked on the island of Malta, a deadly snake that was driven out by the heat of the fire bit him.  He simply shook the creature off into the flames.  You should follow Paul’s example.

Whatever may be troubling you, shake it off!  God has great things planned for you.  The dreams of the future leave no room for the snakebites of the past.”

By Joyce Meyer, “Ending Your Day Right Devotional”

I share this because this got me thinking of all the times I’ve allowed troubling times get the best of me.  But I’ve got an all powerful God in my corner that should give me cause to think when trouble comes a knocking that my God is Bigger than any trouble I, man or the enemy may bring so what I need to do is to learn to instantly turn to Him thus shaking it off in the process.

What freedom that knowledge affords me.  I no longer have to be a slave to my problems I can put them at the throne of Christ and leave them there for Him to handle and my part in all of this is to listen to His voice and be obedient to His calling simply and yet the flesh makes it so hard to do at times.

Lord, help your children to shake off their troubles by giving them to you and being obedient to Your wise counsel and guidance.  Help us to follow you and you alone.  Amen!

Joy – A Fellow Sojourner & A Woman After God’s Own Heart!