43 “And after the meeting of the synagogue broke up, many Jews and devout converts to Judaism followed Paul and Barnabas, who, as they spoke with them, urged them to continue in the grace of God.”
Acts 13:43 (ESV)
Once upon a time a new team (in Antioch, Turkey, to be exact) needed some direction. This “squad,” a young church, was looking for lift to keep going.
The apostle Paul wanted them to make it, so he gave them a great boost. He tagged them with this key lifeline: “Continue in the grace of God.” That precept is fundamental to holding all of us together and keeping us moving forward.
Let’s take a good lap around this pivotal verse ...
THE RIGHT DIRECTION IS GRACE. Of all the ways we try to maximize life and build movement, grace (along with truth) is the best direction to run. God has designed our health and wholeness to be found here, as we learn to both give it and receive it.
There may not be a more critical life skill than this. If grace is behind the moves we make, count on God’s support!
The legendary hymn “Amazing Grace” crescendos with these pointing words, “Grace will lead us home.” Indeed, a good dose of real grace settles souls and keeps things together.
So get it from God and give it to each other. It’ll do wonders for team morale, personal health, and right worship.
Can we take one more lap around this Scripture, asking one more question?
WHAT DOES CONTINUING IN THE GRACE OF GOD LOOK LIKE? I suggest it’s this:
- Not letting my lustful, self-gratifying flesh take back over
- Not letting my prideful, self-justifying nature take back over
- Never getting over the fact that Jesus saved me by His grace
- Making much of God in Christ
- Listening to the Spirit who keeps pointing me back to grace and mercy
- Extending grace to self and others even as I have received it from God
Stick with this game plan. Continue in the grace of God! It will lead you home.
Reflect: How well are you receiving grace from God and others? How well are you giving it to self and others? What might be blocking the flow of grace in and out of your life?
What grace adjustments might need to be made?
A prayer to consider: Father, thank You for the great grace you have extended to me in Jesus. And You keep giving even more. It is amazing (James 4:6 and Ephesians 2:7). I worship You.
Help me to receive it well and extend it to others even as it keeps being given to me. I want to “continue in the grace of God” as Your Word and Your Spirit faithfully coach me to do.
Keep me headed in the right direction. Point me back to grace continually. I need your help here. By Your grace, lead me home. Amen.