2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new.
In being a follower of Christ, I seek His word and guidance, through prayer, fellowship, and scripture. It is in these moments, I reencounter God’s grace, and see how limited I am in my own understanding. It is also through continual renewal of myself that I understand how He walked, and how He asks me to walk with Him.
Yesterday, I deepened my understanding of God’s grace. In seeking counsel on a relationship, I became judgmental, and sought to push my own understanding based on my journey onto another. But in counsel with another follower of Christ, I had insight into the ways that God works in the hearts of each and every one of us.
He knows His time. He knows what to say and how to say it and when to say it unto each of us so that we understand. In the trials and tribulations of the heart, He is there. In our everyday conveyances, He is there. In our sweat, passions, tears, and actions, He is there. Therefore, I must give it up to Him above that He understands how to talk to the hearts of everyone, more so than I do.
So, it was in this counsel that I was reminded that God’s grace is extended to each and every one of us, and that gift in Jesus Christ is such an amazing blessing that He would have each of us come to know it. He does not want me to be casting judgement on those who have yet to come to Him, as He is doing works in their hearts just as He has done in mine. It is on me to pray, to listen, to witness, to act, and to walk with Him as He would have me walk with Him.
In reading Acts (NKJV) after this counsel, I read about the exact type of encounter that Peter had in Chapter 11.
Peter Defends God’s Grace
11 Now the apostles and brethren who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God. 2 And when Peter came up to Jerusalem, those of the circumcision contended with him, 3 saying, “You went in to uncircumcised men and ate with them!”
4 But Peter explained it to them in order from the beginning, saying: 5 “I was in the city of Joppa praying; and in a trance I saw a vision, an object descending like a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came to me. 6 When I observed it intently and considered, I saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air. 7 And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’ 8 But I said, ‘Not so, Lord! For nothing common or unclean has at any time entered my mouth.’ 9 But the voice answered me again from heaven, ‘What God has cleansed you must not call common.’ 10 Now this was done three times, and all were drawn up again into heaven. 11 At that very moment, three men stood before the house where I was, having been sent to me from Caesarea. 12 Then the Spirit told me to go with them, doubting nothing. Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house. 13 And he told us how he had seen an angel standing in his house, who said to him, ‘Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon whose surname is Peter, 14 who will tell you words by which you and all your household will be saved.’ 15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning. 16 Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17 If therefore God gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God?”
18 When they heard these things they became silent; and they glorified God, saying, “Then God has also granted to the Gentiles repentance to life.”
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.