A Gift We Don’t Deserve

A Gift We Don’t Deserve

The Streetlights New Testament was created to cut through all the misconceptions about the Bible—to encourage you to listen to, read, and study it yourself with fresh ears and a fresh heart. Here is an excerpt from a Corner Talk devotional.

Who Is God? Gracious & Merciful

What is it like to receive a gift you don’t deserve? Two common responses come to mind: a humble “No, I don’t deserve this . . .” or a prideful “No, I’m okay. I don’t need it.” We’ve probably seen both of these responses play out.

Interestingly, we can have a hard time receiving what we don’t deserve. Our pride is often the reason for this: When we have things our way, we like to earn what we receive because of our work or our goodness.

God’s way, on the other hand, is gracious and merciful. He gives what we cannot earn—His grace for our failings. At the same time, He has mercy on us by not giving us the punishment we do deserve. Paul, the writer of 1 Timothy, came to know this merciful God when he was humbled on the road to Damascus on his way to persecute God’s people (Acts 9:1-19). Paul chose to humbly receive what Jesus Christ offered him, and he poured out praise and thanksgiving for the grace and mercy God had displayed toward him (1 Timothy 1:16-17).

How do you view God? Would you, like Paul, describe Him as gracious and merciful to you? Does pride ever cloud your eyes and keep you from seeing the grace and mercy He has shown you?