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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Breathe in the Will of God...into the new year

"Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession.... Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate."

"Cheap grace arose out of man's desire to be saved, but to do so without becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ."

"Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again and again, the gift which must be asked for, the door at which a man must knock. Such grace is costly because it calls us to follow, and it is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ. It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life. It is costly because it condemns sin, and grace because it justifies the sinner. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his Son: 'Ye were bought at a price', and what has cost God much cannot be cheap for us. Above all, it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life, but delivered him up for us. Costly grace is the Incarnation of God."

"Who stands firm? Only the one for whom the final standard is not his reason, his principles, his conscience, his freedom, his virtue, but who is ready to sacrifice all these, when in faith and sole allegiance to God he is called to obedient and responsible action: the responsible person, whose life will be nothing but an answer to God's question and call."

"To be silent does not mean to be inactive; rather it means to breathe in the will of God, to listen attentively and be ready to obey."

— Dietrich Bonhoeffer
(a minister in the Lutheran church, stood in courageous opposition to the Fuehrer (Adolf Hitler) and his policies. He was executed by the Nazis in the Flossenbürg concentration camp in 1945)

As pilgrims on this earth, we are all called into a communion of obedience...sharing the sufferings of God in the world.  God may not give us everything we want, but He always fulfill His promises, leading us along the best and straightest paths to Himself...He is our faithful companion on this journey.

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