The Sufficiency of God’s Grace All the Days of Our Lives

jesus-our-salvation

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand… For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.” (Isa 41:10-13, ESV2011)

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2Cor 12:9, ESV2011)

Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming [out] from us, but our sufficiency is from God, (2Cor 3:4-5, ESV2011- emphasis added)

For some time the phrase, “Our sufficiency is IN Christ,” has been on my mind. Two mornings ago as I read my T. Austin-Sparks devotional, what God has been trying to tell me all came into focus.

Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount said, Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” (Matt 6:34, ESV2011) Here this thought about the sufficiency of the grace of God in our lives is shown by Jesus from the reverse side. He is basically saying that we are not to be anxious about the future or what might happen to us, but what about “sufficient to the day is the grace thereof,” Jesus? Austin-Sparks wrote,

It has often been said that many things which crush us today are the things which have never happened, and may never happen. They exist in our fear, our imagination, our reason. Even if we do have a ‘practical common sense which does not leave things to chance’, are we wise in taking possibilities without the assurance of “As thy days, so shall thy strength be”? (1)

This is so true. Our anxiety shows our lack of faith that God is in command of our lives to order them as He knows best. “…And as thy days, so shall thy strength be.” (Deuteronomy 33:25). I am sure glad that we have this verse in the Bible as well! What an amazing promise we have in this verse! Our Father has promised us that His strength and grace in our lives will be sufficient for the troubles and needs of each day if we simply cast all our cares upon Him (see 1 Peter 5:7). Sparks continues,

“…[This promise] puts our lives on the basis which [He] alone can see us through… From the natural and temporal to the Divine and eternal. Firstly, it establishes us in Divine resource. The great all-comprehending “He” is the all-sufficient source. Not the sooner or later, the shorter or longer of life’s tenure, but “the eternal God”. Not the hap, chance incidents and circumstances of life to dictate and govern, but “God over all”. Not the human or satanic forces deciding the length of our days or the destiny of our lives; but “the God and Father, who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will”. (1)

If we abide by faith IN Christ our lives are hid IN Christ (see Colossians 3:1-3) and not in our own strength external from Him. It is here we will live out another promise, “I came that you might have Life and that more abundantly.” We are called to be a people who have our lives fixed IN Christ, not in and of ourselves. We are Father’s heavenly people if we have HIS Spirit dwelling in us. His ways become our ways and His thoughts become our thoughts as we rest IN His Son, and He gives His angels charge over us!

Because you have made the LORD, who is my refuge, even the most High, your habitation; There shall no evil befall you, neither shall any plague come near your dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways. (Ps 91:9-11, KJ2000)

Did you see that? Christ and the Father are our habitation! It is HERE that all His promises are yea and Amen (2 Cor. 1:20) Sparks continues,

When the women were hastening on their mission of mercy to the tomb of Jesus, anxious care entered their hearts: “Who shall roll away the stone?” When they arrived, it was already rolled away, by “a great angel”. There are angels who can anticipate us. God has said “As“; no more, no less. (1)

“AS thy days, so shall thy strength be.”

(1) http://www.austin-sparks.net/pdf/searchable/AWAT1965.pdf

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44 comments on “The Sufficiency of God’s Grace All the Days of Our Lives

  1. Deborah Golderese says:

    I needed this especially today. Thank you Michael.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Michael, having read these verses to me lately, you might remember that I was particularly struck by the fact that no evil might come near our tent/house/dwelling as we abide IN Him. I felt great comfort at once, thinking about our daughter who cannot get rid of suicidal thoughts. On the other hand, these verses suggest that ‘Christians’ on their own way outside of Christ cannot rely on the same divine protection, right? I think being IN Christ or not has a lot to do with listening to His Spirit and guidance, aka obedience. What do you think, my brother? Great article, btw, no flattery intended.💡 🕎 💡

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michael says:

      Susanne, thanks for your thought provoking comment. Your daughter remains in my heart and prayers. I know that your own abiding IN Christ also brings God’s grace into your whole family. He will prevail in her life as well, dear heart.

      Indeed, our salvation, covering and life exists as we abide IN Christ. Please bear with me. I thought I would write this all out with the scriptures that go with each aspect of our salvation, sanctification and obedience for those who have not got the whole picture of what it means to be “saved” in the eyes of God for He has one goal in mind, that He would have many sons and daughters abiding IN His glory. These two prepositions, “IN” and “INTO” must be understood. God is quite literal and emphatic about this and their usage in the scriptures. Paul wrote:

      “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are IN Christ Jesus.” (Rom 8:1, RSV)

      Jesus made being IN Him (not in a religion) a prerequisite for our spiritual lives:

      I am the vine, you are the branches: He that abides IN me, and I IN him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing. If a man abides not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered…”(John 15:5-6, KJ2000) (John 15:4, RSV)

      All things necessary for our spiritual lives are found as we abide IN Christ where the Father has placed us:

      “And of him [the Father] are you IN Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glories, let him glory IN the Lord.” (1Cor 1:30-31, KJ2000)

      Our very spirit lives are found as we abide IN Him:

      “Therefore if any man be IN Christ, he is a new creation: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (2Cor 5:17, KJ2000)

      “For IN him we live, and move, and have our being…” (Acts 17:28, KJ2000)

      And how do we get IN Him? We receive this gift by God given faith from the Father as He places us IN His Son. Even our faith which places us in Christ is a gift from Him. We must finally see in this process that there is NOTHING good in us!

      “For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Eph 2:8-9, KJ2000)

      We enter His very being by faith:

      “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believes in [Greek: eis – into] him should not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:14-15, KJ2000)

      By the grace and calling of God we first believe INTO Christ and from then on we have our lives IN Christ and not in and of this world or in that old dead Adam we were born into that is of this world (see Eph. 2:1-6).

      Yes, Susanne, to abide IN Christ is to obey Him and follow His Spirit which He as places within us. We are no longer of ourselves as we once were while in the world under the dictates of the Prince of this world. If we do not obey the Spirit we cannot expect the protection and covering of God in our lives. He might be there for us while we are yet babes IN Christ learning to hear His voice, but soon He lets us learn by the pain that our disobedience to Him brings upon us (as happened with the Prodigal Son). As long as we are abiding IN Christ in the calling He has given us, ALL things that happen to us do work together for our good.

      “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Rom 8:28, ESV2011)

      To love God is to obey His Son and He gives us the Holy Spirit to abide IN us as an ever present voice that whispers to us as to the way we should go.

      “For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure. The Father loves the Son and has given all things into his hand. Whoever believes in [eis-into] the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.” (John 3:34-36, ESV2011)

      Yes, my sister, our Father knows that the only way to Life is HIS way and He knows that disobedience leads to death. When we step outside of Christ and follow our flesh we are wide open to be used and abused by the devil and suffer the consequences.

      “And that servant, who knew his lord’s will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.” (Luke 12:47-48, KJ2000)

      Liked by 3 people

      • Thank you so much for taking the time to clarify and enlighten some things that were so important but not that clear to me yet, Michael. That was a very helpful exposition about how to come in(to) and how to abide in Christ, my dear brother. ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

        Actually, after having posted my first response incuding my question on here, I washed my hair, prayed and wept – all at the same time. 😉 Thinking about this question once again, God suddenly answered me with a Scripture from the Old Testament He had shown me before. However, my lack of faith and a certain unclarity have hindered doubtless faith to date. In Proverbs we can read about the call of wisdom. Due to the fact that Jesus has become our wisdom in New Covenantal times, I read it with that in mind as it says,

        20 Wisdom cries aloud in the street, in the markets she raises her voice;
        21 at the head of the noisy streets she cries out; at the entrance of the city gates she speaks:
        22 “How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple? How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing and fools hate knowledge?
        23 If you turn at my reproof, behold, I will pour out my spirit to you; I will make my words known to you.
        24 Because I have called and you refused to listen, have stretched out my hand and no one has heeded,
        25 because you have ignored all my counsel and would have none of my reproof,
        26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when terror strikes you,
        27 when terror strikes you like a storm and your calamity comes like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you.
        28 Then they will call upon me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently but will not find me.
        29 Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the Lord,
        30 would have none of my counsel and despised all my reproof,
        31 therefore they shall eat the fruit of their way, and have their fill of their own devices.
        32 For the simple are killed by their turning away, and the complacency of fools destroys them;
        33 but whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.”
        (Prv 1:20-33 ESV)

        This last verse (33) has been very comforting for me, too. Listening to and acting on divine wisdom that comes from God/Jesus, we can dwell secure whatever might (seem to) happen.

        Thanks a bunch again, dear Michael! 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

      • Michael says:

        Thanks, Susanne. I am sorry to hear that you have still been weeping. I am glad that my reply to you has helped, though. George Davis and I further expanded on these verses that speak of believing “into” Christ and abiding “in” Him in our book, “Life Into Christ” (http://www.awildernessvoice.com/LifeIntoChrist.html).

        Yes, Proverbs 1:33 – “but whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.”surely does fit with what I shared in the post. And where Jesus said, “…whoever does not obey the Son [wisdom] shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him,” seems to fit the rest of what you quote from Proverbs. We as Christians tend to gravitate to the love and grace verses and away from the obedience verses, I am afraid. It seems that we only start obeying once we get tired of reaping what we have sown in our disobedience and call out to Him to change us. :-/ Where would we be without His mercy, grace and kindness as well as the wisdom in His eternal plan?

        Loving and praying for you and your family,
        Michael ❤

        Liked by 2 people

      • Thanks so much, Michael!!! We love you, too. 💙💖💙

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Pat Orr says:

    Michael, thank you for the challenging word.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Ken Dawson says:

    There is no doubt in my mind that Gods promises are a surety–I am so glad for His patience with us in our doubts in uncertainty–We must ever be learning along and your posts and Sues are a great help!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. H.M. Davis says:

    So beautiful. The devotional excerpt you shared reminds me of a story Corrie Ten Boom told about her father when she was young. In brief, she asked him a question he was not ready to tell her the answers to, and in reply he asked her to lift a heavy bag of tools.

    She was unable to, and he told her (roughly) that some topics were just too heavy for her yet, but he would tell her when her strength was enough. When I can remember that, I am less anxious because I know that whatever happens tomorrow, He will give me strength for tomorrow. All I am required to handle is what He is giving me right now, and He provides strength for that, too.

    “And when they bring you before the synagogues and the rulers and the authorities, do not be anxious about how you should defend yourself or what you should say, for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.”
    Luke 12:11-12

    God bless! Look forward to reading more here soon!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      That was a great illustration from Corrie. Thanks, Heather. She told another one like that. She was worried about what tomorrow might bring and her father asked her when it was that he gave her the ticket to hand the conductor on the train. She said “Just before he gets to our seat.” He said, “Exactly! And that is when God gives us the grace we need to face a situation, just before it happens.” I have heard that we serve “the Eleven Fifty-nine God. If we need something by midnight, we will not get it from Him until 11:59PM. I think sometimes it is 11:59:59, but He always comes through if we cast our cares upon Him.
      Thanks for the comment, sister,
      Michael

      Liked by 4 people

      • Ken Dawson says:

        Yea that 11:59 story reminds me of a day of package delivery to the faculty at ORU–I had a big bunch of packages to deliver both outside and inside-it was noon time and I was doing the outside and I thought to myself-I will never get these packages all delivered-Dad said oh yes you will by four o’clock and then satanism said no you won’t-So off I went-then later past three I started on the inside deliveries–I got down to ten packages left at 3:40 and I went to deliver three to Becky in marketing and when she went to sign for them on the handheld they vanished off of the screen-I told her of the situation and she said she was sorry-so I rushed down to shipping and receiving thinking to myself and talking to Daddy–this can’t be–satanism is going to win-I got the three packages re-entered and went back to Becky at 3:50 then did the other deliveries and got back to shipping at 3:59-all done–the next day Dad told me that He and I had won at Beckys office and I really did not need to rush back to shipping to fix them back into the system–then He showed me how I could have fixed it right there in her office–I said to Him-well why did you not show me at the time and He said-I was just stretching you out so you would doubt me and then when we did it you would be all the more a gasp.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Michael says:

        He never misses a chance to give us a practical real life lesson. 🙂 Right, Susanne?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ahem, ahem, alas… yes. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  6. dimple says:

    Thank you for Proverbs 1:33; the whirlwind has been a recurring thought in my life for several months. I haven’t been fearful, although I get very tired of the clamor. It is good to be reminded that “whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.”

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Louise, sorry to hear about the whirlwind going on in your life. Some people seem to thrive on creating chaos in the lives of others, one of Satan’s tactics for sure.
      Yes, Susanne bringing up Proverbs 1:33 was a real blessing for me as well.
      Thanks for your comment. You are in my prayers.

      Liked by 2 people

      • dimple says:

        Thanks, Michael, I appreciate your prayers. I feel I must clarify what I wrote before, however…I hate being too specific, forgive me! Anyway, the whirlwind is what is going on in this nation now, not anything specific in my own life.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Michael says:

        Louise,

        I make it a practice to not get entangled with the affairs of this world system nor to write about political things. Taking sides detracts from the kingdom message of Christ which He has given me to speak. i give to Cesar what belongs to Cesar and to God what belongs to Him… ME.

        You therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that wars entangles himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who has chosen him to be a soldier. (2Tim 2:3-4, KJ2000)

        Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place.” (John 18:36, NIV)

        Once, having been asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17:20-21, NIV)

        Liked by 2 people

      • dimple says:

        Thanks, Michael. I, too, endeavor to be without politics. It is a real struggle, sometimes.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Louise, I just read this in today’s Oswald Chambers’ “My Utmost for His Highest” and thought of you and your situation.

      “Isaiah said that the Lord spoke to him ‘with a strong hand,’ that is, by the pressure of his circumstances (Isaiah 8:11). Without the sovereign hand of God Himself, nothing touches our lives. Do we discern His hand at work, or do we see things as mere occurrences? Get into the habit of saying, ‘Speak, Lord,’ and life will become a romance (1 Samuel 3:9). Every time circumstances press in on you, say, ‘Speak, Lord,’ and make time to listen.”

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Dan says:

    Good post.
    – word of encouragement at this hour..

    Dan

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Nancy says:

    Michael, thank you for your words of encouragement. It is so easy to fall into the “what ifs.” This was a timely message and reminder for me too.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Allan Halton says:

    “Sufficient unto the day is the grace thereof.” Thank you, Michael. The perfect provision for, “Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” What a walk this becomes– leaning no longer on the arm of the flesh (my own resources), but trusting in Him, trusting daily, trusting that He loves, yes, even me, and will daily be with me, will Himself be with me, with the grace I need for evil of the day.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Oh, Allan, I am so pleased that something I wrote was an encouraging reminder for you. Discovering that verse in light of His all sufficient grace in our weakness, grace that counters the evils of each day, THIS was such a blessing for me as well. Thanks for your comment, my brother. May He always be your strength no matter how weak you feel.
      Michael

      Liked by 2 people

  10. Allan Halton says:

    Thank you, Michael. I am reminded of Jesus’ words to His disciples just prior to His ascension. “…And lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” That’s the KJV. It is more literally, “Lo, I am with you all the days, even unto the consummation of the age.” That is, He has committed Himself to be with us a day at a time, day after day after day…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michael says:

      Yes, my brother, and the consummation of this age happens with the return of Jesus Christ to receive many sons and daughters who are IN Christ who shine forth with His glory.

      “Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.” (1John 3:2, ESV2011)

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Excellent read! Blessings

    Like

  12. Beautiful post. I look forward to following your blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Chas says:

    I am many days behind when this posted but it is as a refreshing drink needed this day for my yearning heart.

    Like

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