Why is it that God's grace so often amazes us less then it should? We do we often settle for the trite things of life over the greatness, majesty and beauty of God?
I went on a missions trip last week to Waveland, MS, and the devastation is still VERY visible. People are still living in trailers. Homes are either wiped out completely or unable to be lived in. Unfortunately, for some, the major lesson they learned was that they might get a bigger home! Again, people's natural tendency is to seek for the things in life as opposed to God. But Jesus turns it all around when He says to "seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things shall be added to you" (Matt. 6:33, ESV).
But how do we seek first the Kingdom? How do we seek His righteousness? What happens when we fail in our seeking? I want you to ponder on some quotes from a book, and then give me your thoughts and/or questions.
"...[The] apostle Paul writes, 'For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do....For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice" (Rom. 7:5,19). Would we have to doubt the reality of Paul's faith because 'disobedience and rebellion continue unabated'?"
"...evidence of the new birth is not whether we are, on the whole, achieving victory at any given point, but whether we are at war!"
"While the regenerate do not cease sinning, they also do not cease hating their sin and struggling to eradicate it. The believer loves God's law because it is written on his or her heart (Jer. 31:33-34), but it is his or her inability to conform perfectly to it that creates this tension in the Christian life, this war within."
"Holiness is not an option for the Christian. But hold on - I can hear the hearts racing: 'Holiness, the impossible dream?' To be sure, 'but with God all things are possible' (Matt. 19:26). Holiness is not an option; it is a requirement. But this is not a threat; it's a promise. What God began he will finish (Phil. 1:6). In Christ we already are holy, righteous, sanctified, reconciled (1 Cor. 1:30). Now we are called to live what we are, not to become what we are not yet."
(quotes taken from Christ the Lord edited by Michael Horton, pp. 49-50, 56)