Our Dependency on God’s Love and Grace in 2023
By Bill Pence
A reading from September 24 in Paul Tripp’s book New Morning Mercies daily devotional got my attention. Tripp writes, “We are like babies, unable to meet our own needs and completely dependent on the love of our Father for life, sustenance, and health.”
I think that particular devotional got my attention because my wife Tammy and I have spent so much time this year with triplets (all boys) that were born to our niece and her husband back in February 2019. We generally get to spend one day a week with them. We have seen how they are completely dependent on their parents, or others, for everything they need to survive. They can’t prepare their own meals, clean their own diapers, take necessary medicine, or get a drink of water. They need help from others to do almost anything.
Tripp says that we are much the same in that we “simply don’t have much in our relationship with God and our growth in grace for which we can take credit”. He tells us that “The reality is that if we followed Jesus for a thousand years, we would need his grace as much for the next day as we did the first day that we believed.”
Here are some of the things that Tripp tells us that God provides for us, that we cannot:
- He is the sun that gives us light.
- He is the refuge where we can hide.
- He is the water that nourishes us and the bread that feeds us.
- He is the solid rock on which we stand.
- He is the Captain who defends us against the enemy.
- He is wisdom, blessing us with the insights of truth.
- He is the Lamb that bore the penalty for our sin.
- He is the High Priest who daily brings our case to the Father.
- He is the faithful friend who will not forsake us even in our worst moments.
- He is the Giver who blesses us with spiritual riches that we could never earn.
- He is the One who makes us aware of our sin and brings conviction to our hearts.
- He is the Shepherd who seeks us when we have wandered and are lost, and brings us back to the fold of his care.
Like babies who are physically dependent on us, Tripp tells us that we are not spiritually independent in any way. In fact, the opposite is true. He tells us that just as in the first moment we believed, we are always completely dependent on the grace of the Savior for every spiritual need. He tells us that:
- We cannot go it on our own.
- We have not produced fruit by our own righteousness and strength.
- There really is no good thing that we have that we have not received from God’s gracious hand.
So, Tripp tells us that there is no reason to boast, because, like babies, there is nothing for which we can take credit. All praise, honor, worship and service go to God and God alone. For,
- He sought us.
- He birthed us.
- He sustains us.
- He matures us.
- He protects us.
- He will finally deliver us.
Have you ever considered how helpless we are on our own, as helpless as babies? For that, we should give him all the glory.
Bill Pence is a St. Louis Cardinals fan, formerly a manager at a Fortune 50 organization, and in leadership at his local church. He is a life-long learner and his passion is to help people develop, and to use their strengths to their fullest potential. His favorite book hold his favorite verses, Colossians 3:23 and 2 Corinthians 5:21. Other favorite books are The Holiness of God, and Chosen by God by R.C. Sproul, and Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper. Bill enjoys music in a variety of genres, including modern hymns, Christian hip-hop and classic rock. Bill is married to his best friend Tammy, a graduate of Covenant Seminary. Both have written a book. Bill’s book is, Called to Lead: Living and Leading for Jesus in the work place. Tammy’s book is, editions on Amazon.
Feature Photo By Knowing Jesus