doctrine, theology…and then grace

These words have been rolling around in my head lately. As I have been studying so much in preparation for ministry school and just for my own understanding I have been coming to ends where I am unsure of how to apply what I have learned. As I have always been intrigued by different theologies and doctrines within the Christian church I have felt more of a need to understand the differences recently. It seems there are so many different doctrines and theologies coming forth and I have started to wonder how we all can be the one unified church Christ commissioned as we sometimes feel so strongly about our different understandings. I wonder sometimes how to prioritize my mind in a way that is pleasing to God and His call for me as a Christ follower, disciple and discipler. How do I take all of my understandings of what I’ve learned through careful Bible study and make them applicable to my everyday life and love for others. Sometimes, I will be honest, I am overwhelmed with this thought. It seems so simple but so complex at the same time. As I have heard many pastors and leaders say, the focus of our life should be in loving others and sharing the gospel, I find this a vague explanation. Yes I know that this should be my focus, my questions are and my focus is on how to do this efficiently. This seems to be a hard question to answer and sometimes has become a laughing stock from the non Christian’s perspective as the church as a whole has tried to answer it. My soul desire is to be the love that God showed through Christ to everyone that I come into contact with and to help others who really want answers to life’s hardest questions find them in His words of truth written in the Bible. I have a passion to be the hand that reaches out and helps those who are searching find their way to the one who loves them unconditionally and wants them to see it so badly! I thrive on seeing others realize the love of God for them and enter into the life He has for them! In my strong desire to show others this I have struggled many times with grace. Grace really sums up the full work of Christ on the cross, yet for some reason, even as I have experienced His grace time and time again, I have struggled to recognize it and I think this is why I have also struggled to demonstrate it. Being a daughter who grew up in a Christian home and having been a part of the family of God since before I can remember, making Him my Savior and Lord at age six and making a public declaration of it at age eight, I never really felt I had messed up so much so that His grace had been clearly established in me. Yes, I knew as a human, being born of sin through Eve I needed Christ as my Savior but I didn’t really understand how much sin has corrupted me and this world until I matured and walked through life more. I feel like the biggest thing God has been showing me lately is my need for grace myself and in this I have learned how essential it is for me to have grace on others as God and them have had on me.

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