Every morning, I wake up acutely aware of my neediness. My need for grace, mercy, strength and forgiveness greets me as my warm mushy feet hit the cold hard floor. A begging bowl, each day I come, empty, waiting to be filled. A bottomless pit of need every. single. day. I wish it weren’t that way. I wish I had what it takes on my own to live perfectly, love indulgently, forgive freely and work diligently. But I don’t. On my own, I’m not enough. On my own, I’m self-seeking and self absorbed. On my own, I look out for number one: me. On my own, even when it appears I’m doing the right things, it’s out of self-serving motives. On my own, I’m lost.
A few weeks ago, in church with my darling mom, we heard the pastor talk about Jesus’ words in Matthew 6 where he tells his audience, “Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” or put a different way, “Do not worry about tomorrow. Let tomorrow worry about itself. Living faithfully is a large enough task for today.” The pastor essentially said, which I’ve heard before but needed to hear again, that we’re given what we need for today and tomorrow we’ll be given what we need for tomorrow.
I’d like to bank grace and store it up for future use. I want to know that, not only do I have what I need today, but I will have what I need tomorrow too. And I do know that intellectually, but I want it tangibly. I’d like to hoard grace. But it clearly doesn’t work that way. God provides when the need arises. No sooner. He promises to supply our needs–spiritual, physical, mental, emotional– and He provides out of the wealth and riches of His glory, not out of poverty. Life-giving, life-sustaining grace comes moment by moment. Then out of that rich gift, we can overflow with grace for others.
I find myself, this advent season believing and hoping in this truth: you can’t bank God’s grace but you can trust that it will be there when you need it.
How enduring is God’s loyal love;
the Eternal has inexhaustible compassion.
Here they are, every morning, new!
Your faithfulness, God, is as broad as the day.
Have courage, for the Eternal is all that I will need.
My soul boasts, “Hope in God; just wait.” ~Lamentations 3:22-24 (The Voice)
Know this: my God will also fill every need you have according to His glorious riches in Jesus the Anointed, our Liberating King. So may our God and Father be glorified forever and ever. Amen. ~Philippians 4:19-20 (The Voice)