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A Friend Called Grace
by Milton Hooper
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Sometimes, no matter how hard you work to make people forget about your past mistakes, something or someone will be there to remind you of them. In our judicial system, if someone commits a criminal act they usually get a record and follows that person throughout their lives. It can be a dark cloud following them wherever they go when applying for a job or trying to get a loan. It isn't enough that you pay your debt or serve your time. It seems that people can't look through a past mistake to the person's current state.

The Bible tells us that we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of the Lord (Romans 3:23). We all have sinned and have made mistakes. None of us are perfect. Although we have committed these transgressions, Christ has paid the debt for our sins. Sometimes in the world you can never do enough to pay for your mistakes but Christ doesn't treat us this way. HE paid our debt and when we accepted him as our personal savior, he forgave us that debt and holds no record against us. Regardless of the size of the mistake, some things are difficult to live down but he cleanses our record. Just like that old hymn -"An Old Account Settled Long Ago".

Yes, Christ is the one who can forgive your past mistakes and restore your life. He's a friend called "grace". He doesn't care what you've done or your many mistakes. His forgiving grace will cleanse you and restore you again. He's one friend that won't throw your past up into your face. His forgiveness is complete.

You might be thinking: "But no matter how hard I try, I just can do it. I can't get past my past." Living the Christian life is not easy but neither is living life without Him. One thing you must put before you is the determination to press your way through. Don't give up! Throughout life we make mistakes - BIG mistakes, but you can get past them. It doesn't matter how we start, it only matters how we finish this race of life. We must forget about the past and press toward the eternal prize before us. (Phillipians 3:13-14)

Grace is something we didn't deserve. The Bible tells us how God has extended grace to us by offering us salvation and eternal life with him for free! We don't have to do anything to earn it. In fact, we can't earn it or buy it. We simply accept it by believing that Jesus, God's Son, died for our sins so we wouldn't have to. It wasn't a painless grace without a price to pay but Jesus became the sacrifice to offer us this grace.

There is no sin or mistake too big that Jesus will not forgive. He's a friend called grace and he will help you put your life together. Too many times we will try everything else but let God be in control. When he is in control, the order of our lives are committed to His care and He will work on our behalf. Sometimes he provide us with a miracle and other times he will be with us through our troubles and give us a chance to learn from them.

Even the most revered people in the Bible have made mistakes and experienced God's wonderful grace. When David sinned with Bathsheba, he could have let that sin ruin the rest of his life. He could have lost out on his relationship with the Lord; however, he persevered through it and became known as a man after God's own heart. David still had to endure the consequences of his sin, but God was with him.

There's no better time than today to shed the disappointments of your past. You don't have to try to get everything right first before you can meet this friend called grace. (Romans 3:24) Approach him with a repentant heart and let him turn your life around. Unfortunately, you can't avoid people who will remind you of your past mistakes, but you can turn to the one who truly forgives. He is a friend called "grace".

If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW

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