And The Grace Always Just Overflows

And The Grace Always Just Overflows

Do You Believe This?
John 11:26
© Hilary F. Marckx, all rights reserved

Do I believe this:
that Jesus is the Resurrection and the life?
I do, but how–why?
What is it that I really believe?
We know that the writer, John, wrote this
between 90 to 100 CE,
so the question probably was not cloaked
with the same metaphorical references in this text
as it was when Jesus spoke the words,
and asked the question.
We know that at the time of this writing,
it was still believed that Jesus would return
to that current generation and take them up into heaven.
Within a few years, as that generation was dying off,
they would begin to hedge their bets as to the Second Coming,
but with this writer, not yet.
But it is a good question, nonetheless.
What is it we do believe about Jesus?
But what is it we do believe in our own time?
What do I believe — well?
I believe that Jesus is the Son of the Living God.
But I also believe that so every human child on earth.
I believe that Jesus is a powerful and good factor
in my living and in my dying, and as such,
according to how I choose to place my faith,
I can find hope, joy, grace, deliverance in this one
in whom I choose to place my faith.
I believe this, but I know many who do not,
and I also believe that they do not need to do so
in order to receive grace,
but I know that for me,
I feel comforted in my belief.
I also believe
that we do not need to wait until the end
to enjoy life and resurrection,
Jesus offers this to us
now, in our own time,
in the midst of the
joys and tragedies
that are a product of our living,
we are always totally immersed
in the grace Jesus offers…


The Fullness of Grace

Psalm 91:9-16
© Hilary F. Marckx. All rights reserved

We have no concept
of the many dangers
from which we have been delivered.
We complain and whine
when things go wrong for us,
but have we ever thought of the
assortment of attacks,
onslaughts, crazy situations,
dumb choices, fool-hardy ideas
we have been delivered from
through God’s ongoing,
ever-present, steadfast grace?
We think we know troubles,
but I shudder to think about
the bullets I have unknowingly dodged,
the harm that I,
in blissful ignorance, walked through,
safe and secure, held and protected by God.
Oblivious, we constantly drink of God’s Salvation!
This is something to consider
the next time
we think that God
is slacking:
Maybe there are a few things
we need to experience for ourselves
to know the fullness
of the grace God gives us.
Otherwise, how will we know gratitude?


Strangers and Friends

Strangers and Friends

Strangers and Friends?
Matthew 5:47
© Hilary F. Marckx, all rights reserved

I like my friends.
Most of the time I like them a lot.
Strangers are a different thing altogether.
I can be vulnerable around my friends, usually…
I must be on guard around strangers, mostly…
So what is the big deal about the stranger?
Why is it so important to greet strangers
as if they were friends?
Why should I reach outside of my inner circle of comrades,
my safety net of confidantes
and extent greetings to those unknown to me?
Well, because at one time we all were
unknown to each other—strangers,
and the friends we have now were strangers to us.
Many times we think of those within our own group
as if they have always been known to us,
and those outside of our group
as if they are truly strangers
and therefore never will be known.
But even if we are known to many, now,
we once were truly alone as we walked toward eternity—
except, that is, for the one
who called us out of our own aloneness
and into holy camaraderie with the God of all.
Most important is that one time we did not know
God’s grace, and we were strangers to it,
but we now we have been included in it,
and because of that inclusion of ourselves,
we are expected to include the stranger,
who is not really a stranger
but really ourselves,
for as we include, we are included…