Today’s guest post is from Chris Lautsbaugh, who writes the grace-filled and encouraging blog No Superheroes. Chris pours out grace in all that he writes, as he knows the freedom grace offers us to move away from thinking we need to be superheroes, and instead allowing us to be true followers of Christ. I’m so excited to introduce Chris and his blog to you and I hope you enjoy!
My wife and I recently found our house decorated with Post It Notes. Our son, Garett, had written “I Love You’ on the notes and attached them to mirrors, televisions, even in the toilet. We were so touched by our seven-year old’s tender heart.
My wife commented to him about it, thanking him. His response brought a sickening feeling to our stomach’s.
“I am paying you back for all the bad things I have done.”
This of course began a process of explaining our love was not based on his deeds and our forgiveness was already present.
It’s so hard when we see a performance mentality in our children, be it with Post It Notes or attempting to earn our favor with a perfect report card.
As hard as it is, it brings pause for reflection. As believers do we participate in the same type of exchange with God?
While not literally writing love notes to God, we structure our lives in some form of repayment. We strive and make attempts to change our karma by tilting the cosmic scale away from bad and towards good.
I think God might have the same response……
Think of the last time we blew it. We face a temptation to undo the wrong by praying extra prayers, reading more of our Bible, or doing some good deed.
We attempt to compensate for our wrong with something better, even if the act carries impure motives. Forgiveness becomes something earned.
Tipping the scales in our favor is something other religions of the world attempt to do, but not Christianity.
Grace is not earned by Post It Notes.
We cannot repay our debt through good deeds.
Grace is not a 20% off certificate.
Grace must cover it all or we need to make up the difference by something we do.
Is it any wonder we rarely embody peace and joy when our lives become consumed with performance and merit-badge earning?
In the Old Testament, you broke the covenant with only one mistake. Quantity of error was not the issue. Even a single mistake broke the standard of perfection.
God, who does not change, still requires this perfection.
How many Post It Notes must one write to meet this standard? I think we should buy stock in the companies which make these adhesive yellow debt-reducing items.
As followers of Christ, we can die to self effort and rest in the sacrifice of Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:21 reflects this with: “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
Righteousness means we have measured up to the standard of God through Christ. And, it came as a free gift!
As a Father, I pray for my son to be secure in my love.
I want him to acknowledge his mistakes and learn from them.
I hope to see him to apologize and move on.
I desperately desire him to know he is a good kid; that he is my kid.
How do you think God feels about His kids? What ways to do we attempt to “Post It Note” our way into God’s good graces?
Did you enjoy this post? Chris is giving away 10 copies of his book, Death of the Modern SuperHero: How Grace Breaks our Rules to the readers of Modern Reject.
To enter, all you need to do is sign up to receive posts from NoSuperHeroes in your inbox. Those who do will receive a free copy of his Ebook, “Never Enough”
In addition, 10 people will have their choice of a print copy or a Kindle version.
Chris Lautsbaugh lives in Muizenberg, South Africa. He serves with Youth With a Mission (YWAM), teaching and training missionaries and church leaders. Together with his wife Lindsey, they lead and steward training programs and ministries in and around Cape Town, reaching out to under privileged communities, planting churches, and meeting needs associated with the issues South Africa faces. They have been in missions for 35 combined years. They serve together with their two boys, Garett and Thabo.
Chris blogs at www.nosuperheroes.com and has published a book on grace, Death of the Modern Superhero:How Grace Breaks our Rules. You can follow him on Twitter or Facebook.