Friday, November 18, 2016

A(n awkward) story about grace

LET'S start with a story.

Two teams entered a contest, and they were the favorites to win it all considering their respective backgrounds.

Team A has been dominating the said competition for quite some time, while Team B is etching its own story of success in recent times.

Then came the contest proper. Team A was the first to perform, and despite the pressures of being team number one, the squad made a beautiful performance.

Two teams later (there were eight competing squads), it was Team B's turn to give its best shot.

Its performance, however, was kinda unpleasant to see. The team went sloppy, and everybody thought, "They won't even make the Top 3."

After the remaining four teams did their contest pieces, the awarding came.

To everyone's surprise, Team A, with all of its "clean" showcase, would only take home the bronze.

The fans of Team A thought, "OK. We'll take it. Team C (another known dominating squad but has only made a renaissance recently) will win it for sure due to their epic performance."

Curiously, Team C's "perfect" routine was only good for second, and the people at the venue became more puzzled.

The champion team was announced, and, lo and behold, Team B won!

You may ask, "So what does this have to do with your Christian blog?"

Let's start with the first quote. Because of Team B's botched bid, it should not really make the podium. That's justice.

However, the judges, although they gave the necessary deductions, looked at the positives in Team B's bid and thought, "Hey! They have what it takes to win this." That's mercy.

Finally, the host's announcement of Team B as the grand winner is the "grace" part.

Let's connect this to the story of the Gospel.

Because of our sin, we're as botched and more of failures as Team B, so by rules of justice, we are losers. In fact, God has made a penalty for our sin: death, which the Apostle Paul ironically coined it as our "wages of sin" (Romans 6:23a). I almost forgot: everyone, including me, has sinned (Romans 3:23).

But God created us in His own image (Genesis 1:27), making us His prized possession. While justice says we should all die, the Lord loves us so much (John 3:16a) that he decided to acquit us and instead came down to Earth, taking the form of a human, and carried our supposed punishment to the cross, effectively giving us mercy.

In fact, He gave us a gift that we really don't deserve: eternal life (Romans 6:23b). Through Jesus' victory on the cross, we share His "championship" too as long as we embrace that He is our Lord and Savior. That's the ultimate example of grace.

If you want to have an eternal life and experience God's victory that He gave to you, pray this:

"Lord, I'm sorry for the sins that I have made. Thank You for Your sacrifice on the cross, and thank You that Your victory is our victory too. I embrace that victory and let Jesus Christ be my Lord and Savior. Thank You for the eternal life. In Jesus' name, amen." 

"For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God... (Ephesians 2:8 ESV)"

PS: If the story above seems familiar to you, yes! That's what happened in last year's UAAP Cheerdance Competition. It may seem awkward for a Christian from UP to be inspired by the NU Pep Squad's upset considering all the controversies about the result that eventually led to UP Pep backing out this year. However, just like the upset, we are not deserving of God's victory, but He shared it to us.

No comments:

Post a Comment