This post by kathylarkman was originally published at GRACE PLACE

in step with the SpiritI am amazed at where the time has gone since Christmas and New Year’s Day! It is almost mid-January! I hope you all have settled back into the routine of “normal” in your lives. I have been praying for you as you “live out God’s grace” in your every day life.

God’s grace comes to us in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ…every minute of every day. God not only forgives us but also gets inside of us by the Holy Spirit. As we have been studying, our Triune God’s grace gives us His identity and transforms us increasingly into Christ’s likeness. This month (29 January) we will consider God’s grace training us.

We are called to cooperate with the Holy Spirit. Scripture teaches us that we will struggle with our flesh and spiritual forces, run the race, fight the good fight, and pray without ceasing.. Our hope is not in our ability to do these things, but in the God of grace- Jesus Christ in redeeming action, working sovereignly in our undeserving lives. Our God of grace never grows tired, never gets frustrated, and never gives up on us!

These are wonderful truths. But sometimes I find that these wonderful themes of grace can become commonplace and so familiar that I take them for granted. I can lose my wonder of the cross, the value of His forgiveness, the need for Christ’s moment by moment rescue and redeeming action. Before I know it, my concern and care to stay in the step with the Spirit wanes, and my life has lost its gospel attractiveness, witness, and I am just plain sloppy.  It is simply not honouring to our Lord and I suffer the consequences as well. Can you relate?

So how do we stay in step with the Spirit? We need to preach the Gospel to ourselves everyday to remember who we are in Christ, to remember there is a spiritual battle going on. Even to remember, we need God’s grace.

So as we return to our study of Living Out God’s Grace; let us encourage and pray for one another- to preach the gospel to ourselves daily; to value and celebrate God’s grace. To ask God to value Him above our comfortable lives and agendas. And as we centre on God’s gospel grace, God’s training of us will begin to seem more like a delight than a duty.