Lenten Devotional: Saturday, March 9
At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. Titus 3:3-7
Vindicate me, my God, and plead my cause against an unfaithful nation. Rescue me from those who are deceitful and wicked. You are God my stronghold. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy? Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God. Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.
Oh boy! I had such a hard time choosing which reading to choose to write on today, so you get a little dose of both. It was Psalm 43 vs. Titus 3, v1 – 7. I recommend them both to you. Both readings plead for salvation from God; the Psalm, from the standpoint of self-righteousness, and the reading from Titus acknowledging our own shortcomings. And, if you are anything like me, both attitudes are reflected in our own lives. It is so much easier in the good times, to acknowledge our own weakness and failings and the gratitude we have to our Savior. But, when times are not so fun, as for many of us, they have not been for a while, we get on our high horse, and wonder why we have not yet been saved, saying we will be so grateful once that happens. The saving Grace from the Psalm, however, is the very last line: “Put your hope in God, for I will YET praise him, my Savior and my God.”
God is always there for us, in good times, as well as in times of great challenge. Let us all make the extra effort to show our gratitude for His saving Grace. None of us is perfect, and it is specifically through the ultimate, supremely generous sacrifice of Jesus Christ that we are saved. That is the BIG wow that supersedes all else.