Saturday: Feb. 25                                           

2 Corinthians 5.20b – 6.10

            We entreat you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.  For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.  As we work together with him, we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain. For he says, “At an acceptable time I have listened to you, and on a day of salvation I have helped you.” See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation!

             We are putting no obstacle in anyone’s way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, but as servants of God we have commended ourselves in every way: through great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities,  beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, holiness of spirit, genuine love, truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; in honor and dishonor, in ill repute and good repute. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; as unknown, and yet are well known; as dying, and see–we are alive; as punished, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

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            Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote, “Cheap grace is the deadly enemy of our Church.  We are fighting today for costly grace.”  Bonhoeffer is echoing Paul’s letter to the church in Corinth as he reminds them that while God’s grace is abundant and free, a life of faith is not simple or without struggle.  Paul notes the difficulties we experience in life (afflictions, hardships, imprisonments, sleepless nights, hunger, etc.), but notes the power of God’s grace to overcome them through “purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, truthful speech, etc.”  Lent reminds us that while death is present, it cannot overpower grace.  While pain and sorrow are present, they cannot outlast compassion and mercy.  While doubt and uncertainty cloud our faith, we find comfort and reassurance in daily glimpses of God’s presence.

Graceful God, guide us toward a faith that is open and honest,

 that we might enter into full discipleship and covenant with you and the world.

Rev. Kevin Snow

Central Christian Church, Huntington

Assoc. Regional Minister for Youth & Young Adults

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