The Cost of Grace

Rebecca Van Noord

When we say something hurtful to a friend or a family member, we know we can’t just ignore the harm we have caused (we should know, anyway). In order to repair the relationship and earn back trust, we have to acknowledge the rift we’ve created. But when it comes to our relationship with God, we don’t always look at it the same way. Sometimes, consciously or unconsciously, we belittle the incredible love that He has shown us.

When we don’t acknowledge our sin as an act of rebellion, we feel far from God. We’ve created this great divide because we’ve tarnished our relationship with Him. In Psalm 39, the psalmist is in great agony over his sin—to the point where he acknowledges that people are nothing and his life is vanity: “Surely a man walks about as a mere shadow” (Psa 39:5).

Without God, life is meaningless. The psalmist acknowledges that his transgression has done great harm. He turns to God and says: “And now, O Lord, for what do I wait?” (Psa 39:7). At the heart of that cry is a need for redemption from a God that answers. He provided a way of salvation—one that was incredibly costly through Christ. In 2 Corinthians, Paul stresses the importance of not taking this great gift for granted: “Now because we are fellow workers, we also urge you not to receive the grace of God in vain.… Behold, now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation!” (2 Cor 6:1–2).

Paul’s call is urgent because Jesus’ coming to earth wasn’t a small gesture. It was incredible. If we aren’t amazed at it, if we scorn it (even by accident), we may miss out. We have a greater hope than the psalmist was ever able to realize; his broken cry would not be fully answered for centuries. So today, when you hear God’s call, don’t respond with silence. Respond with a thankful heart.

Are you ignoring sin in your life? How can you live with a thankful heart, since Christ has bought you with such a great sacrifice?

This article was originally published in Connect the Testaments: A One-Year Daily Devotional with Bible Reading Plan.