Tuesday September 6, 2022 – “Requirements” a part of grace and mercy

What is this blog really about?

Suppose we had eyes to see that some important things in our lives weren’t what they seemed to be.  Things that we thought were fine and good turn out to be not so good – incompatible with whom we want to be.  Some areas of life are much more obvious when it comes to telling the difference – while others much more difficult.

Think about the word “requirement”.  It’s a word that appropriately applies to many aspects of our lives.  What is required to be a student; an employee; a husband; a wife; an employer?  Different things have different requirements – that’s a normal part of life.

But what happens if we misperceive what the requirements truly are of something important in our lives?  We form an understanding of what “normal” is; but that understanding in reality is really sub-normal or contrary to what it should be.

In such situations, what does it take to make us aware that something is amiss in our understanding?  Often it is through encountering information involving that subject that provokes a re-evaluation of our understanding and behavior.  Insights are persuasively presented that often highlight the differences between what our understanding is and what it should be.

Getting back to that word “requirements”, we often don’t associate it with our Christian faith.  We tend to focus more on grace and mercy – particularly with the passing of time.  We often fail to recognize that our salvation experience was just the beginning of God’s work in us, not the “we have arrived” moment.

We’re not talking about earning salvation; nor are we talking about legalism.  We are talking about loving God and all that implies – and the implications are enormously wonderful.  The net results are not culturally acceptable living patterns.

My goal isn’t to hit readers in the side of the head with a 2 x 4 to get them to change.   My goal is to present the glorious truth of the Gospel in such a way that readers hear the Holy Spirit speaking to them and encouraging them to respond to Him.  Consider Paul’s powerful instructions in Romans 12:1-2 (MSG),

So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.


About Don Schmidt

Beginning in the fall of 2009, Don was VP of Operations & Director of Student Life for 2 years at Williamson Christian College in Franklin, TN - a wonderful, accredited 4 year college for adult learners. That is where he started writing the devotionals. The passion of his heart is to love God and to help others learn to love God more and more. He grew up in St. Joseph, MI - Class of '66. Graduated from Michigan State in '70 and Wheaton Grad School in '78. Thunderous conversion October 11, 1968. He and Donna were engaged 2 hrs & 15 minutes after they met August 25, 1969 at a Christian camp in Georgia. They married in '70 and have 4 wonderful sons. Most of his adult career has been in business in NE Ohio. They lived for 20 years in Peninsula, OH. They attended St. Luke's Ministries (Anglican) in Copley, OH for many years. Six years ago they were reassigned by the Lord to attend River of Life Community Church in Hudson, OH. St. Luke's prayerfully sent them off on this new adventure with much love.
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