“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. 4 He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. 5 For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ. 6 Even when we are weighed down with troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation!”
2 Corinthians 1:3-6
“Grace is given to heal the spiritually sick, not to decorate spiritual heroes”
I don’t know if I have ever met a Medal of Honor recipient, and somehow I’m sure that I would’ve remembered. I most certainly have not met ‘a spiritual hero’. I imagine them however to be quite dynamic, gushing over with humility and love. Somewhat like being a ‘Superman of the Soul’.
Through His Holy Spirit, we were chosen not because we are superheroes, but because we are sick. God doesn’t inspect us for exceptional qualities that we may someday possess. Instead He is a paramedic, intervening with grace and mercy in our distress and helping us in our desperation.
Perhaps, there are some who secretly want to be ‘decorated’. They love the attention and covet glory. Faith is not really a medicine; it is more like a decoration. It pins on its chest the Medal of Honor. The highest award you can receive–the holy medallion of faith (with oak leaf clusters, of course).
Having had lived for a few years in a ‘third world country’, I’ve gotten to observe up close believers who are pathetically poor. I have seen poverty crush people like a boy crushes a bug on the sidewalk. The sense I have can be summed up in a phrase, a ‘desperate gratitude’ for His grace.
Jesus has come and gathered up all their sin and shame and evil, and carried it away from them. Their walk with Him now is in gratitude, not in attainment. Here in the USA that ‘seeing’ has become myopic. We struggle to see clearly. Actually, we can be almost dangerous if we don’t see this.
We cannot envision anything clearly without an adjustment to our eyes. There has to be a desperation that moves in and heals us. Something that will pull our faith like a magnet.
We are not collecting ‘merit badges’, but medication and rolled-up bandages. We hurt– our friends and family hurt, people we haven’t met yet, hurt.
“The mercies of God make a sinner proud, but a saint humble.” Thomas Watson