So one of the things I’ve been accused of is being a hyper-grace preacher. And what people mean by that is that I emphasize grace in a way that removes any responsibility for dealing with bad habits, issues of sin and bad character. I want to just say this very quickly. I am so guilty of being hyper-grace, but not for those reasons. The word for grace is always extravagant. There is no restraint in God’s part. It is hyper-grace. It is overabundant. It is so overwhelming that it changes everything about you, about your identity and it’s not dependent upon you and that’s why I am hyper-grace in that sense of the word. But what I’m not is a grace preacher that excuses people from dealing with the junk. Dealing with the stuff and responding to the leading of God in obedience.
You see, grace does two things. It provokes obedience and it empowers obedience. In other words, when I get a full revelation and an ongoing revelation indeed of the extravagant kind of beauty of God’s grace in my life, the Bible says in Titus 2:11 that grace teaches me to say no to ungodliness so that I get to live in the full expression of my now identity which has been given freely to me as a gift from Jesus. I get to live in obedience.
I’m teaching my son this wonderful phrase, slow obedience is no obedience. When God begins to speak to us, and he calls us to step out in faith, let’s do it quickly because most often when we’re trying to deliberate with God, it speaks of an unsurrendered part of our heart that needs to surrender to the goodness of God. Because where God leads us, He will always reveal his goodness in it. And sometimes obedience does not require reason, it requires faith.
The second thing I love about grace is that it empowers me to live an obedient life. I don’t try work hard to overcome sin. I don’t try and think myself out of sin. I don’t have this kind of, just say no attitude. No, no. Grace begins to empower me because I begin to see, hey, I’m not a sinner, I am a saint. I am not an orphan, I’m a son. I am not forgotten, I’m remembered daily and God will never leave me nor forsake me.
When you live from that place, sin looks like cheap costume jewelry in comparison to the beauty and the kindness that is displayed in Jesus on the cross by His grace. His extravagant, over the top, hyper-grace toward us. Why don’t you try and live like that? Because when you live from the place of grace, you get to enjoy all that God has for us.