The sufficiency of God’s grace and the controversy of satisfaction of human wants and human daily toils

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By Sir Emmanuel Uzor

Over time, the quest for ultimate truth has been fatal so to say. This is because in the man’s insatiable quest to know, he digs up various obstacles that render his knowledge inadequate. That is to say that the deeper you go in your sojourn to unravel the ultimate truth, the shallower you become.

Today, there is a very big puzzle between the statement of St Paul in one of his epistles to the Correntians in 2Cor. 12-7-10. Though Paul was speaking in a reported speech and interchanged his position by bringing God who spoke in personal pronoun, there is a very deep lacuna between man’s daily toils and satisfaction of humman wants.

Here God spoke through Paul by saying “My grace is sufficient for you”

How? What’s the essence of man’s daily toils on earth? Why do we strive and suffer where we have all in all intents and purposes, the sufficient grace of God?

These are mind bugging jigsaws that pose controversy between man’s insatiable needs on earth and God’s ever presence and sufficient grace.

When God said His Grace is sufficient for you. He was not referring to you having all that you need, but having the sufficient grace to seek all you need and do all with your ability.

The open cheque of God to man in 2nd Corinthians 12, 7 to 10 therefore presents God as all knowing. Knowing the limited knowledge of man and his weaknesses and then presenting a bridge for man to seek all he wants through the channel of limitless grace of God.

The second part of this discourse is; “My Grace is made manifest in your weakness” This simply presents unlimited access to God by man despite our lowest moments.

Man is by nature not worthy or clean so to say and this could be linked to the call of Prophet Ezekiel in Ezk. Chapter 2: 2-5.
God is the one calling man to eternal rest, reminding him always about the limitless availability of His Grace up for grab.

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In the call of Prophet Ezekiel in the chapter above, we can take three things home.

  1. The call of Ezekiel
  2. The Person calling
  3. The response of the called and the whole Israel.

In the unworthy nature of Prophet Ezekiel, God chose him. In his weakness, God still chose him because, God’s grace surpasses all weakness and God’s grace has always dwelt among man even before creation. God’s call therefore was for Ezekiel to activate the already abundance of God’s grace in him for the task ahead.

In Isaiah 6vs 5 Prophet Isaiah encountered the power of God and what stood before him was his weakness and he had to shout, professing his weakness instead of adumbrating the grace of God which diminishes every weakness.

Isaiah chapter 6 vs 5. I said, There is no hope for me! I am doomed because every word that passes my lips is sinful, and I live among a people whose every word is sinful. And yet, with my own eyes I have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.

  1. Then one of the creatures flew down to me, carrying a burning coal that he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs.
  2. He touched my lips with the burning coal and said, This has touched your lips, and now your guilt is gone, and your sins are forgiven.

In verse 6 as we read above, God’s Angel cleansed him and made him to see God’s grace and powers above his limitations.

However in our daily lives, we depend on the grace of God to push forward. It therefore presents before us that we can conquer anything because of the preponderance of God’s grace.

In the call of Prophet Jeremiah in Jeremiah chapter 1 vs 7 to 8, God aroused the consciousness of Jeremiah to His limitless grace and pushed him to go and succeed.

“7. But the LORD said to me, *Do not say that you are too young, but go to the people I send you to, and tell them everything I command you to say.

  1. Do not be afraid of them, for I will be with you to protect you. I, the LORD, have spoken”
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You cannot be satisfied living without consciousness of God’s grace to succeed. You must wear your garb, have your plough and then remember you have all it takes to survive, living above your limitations and fears, because even in that moment you feel all is lost, is the moment the grace to pick up and succeed abounds most.

In Judges chapter 6 vs 12 to 17, the people of Israel were already consumed by fear and weakness. They had given up and were already feeling defeated when God Himself led the warcry that aroused the consciousness of the Israelites through Gideon.

Gideon, who was not even aware that he was a great man until God appeared; had given up and had forgotten the inherent limitless possibilities of God’s presence and grace to lead them to victory against their oppressors, the Midianites. In that state of despair, God wasn’t happy but because of His mercy, He woke Gideon up and told him who he was. Untill that day, Gideon was never aware of his potentials and what he can achieve through God’s grace.

It’s worthy to note that God did not fashion a new spear, nor arrow nor sent any chariot or charioters for the people of Israel. He simply called them to fan to flame His preponderant sufficient grace and leverage on same for optimum victory.

Judges chapter 6 vs 12. The LORD’s angel appeared to him there and said, The LORD is with you, brave and mighty man!

  1. Gideon said to him, If I may ask, sir, why has all this happened to us if the LORD is with us? What happened to all the wonderful things that our fathers told us the LORD used to do—how he brought them out of Egypt? The LORD has abandoned us and left us to the mercy of the Midianites.

In the state our despair, we often succumb to this statement of Gideon above and ask, if God’s grace is sufficient for us, why are we still suffering? We suffer because we have failed to encounter the grace of God and put our fears and limitations behind us.

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In vers 14. “Then the LORD ordered him, Go with all your great strength and rescue Israel from the Midianites. I myself am sending you.

  1. Gideon replied, But Lord, how can I rescue Israel? My clan is the weakest in the tribe of Manasseh, and I am the least important member of my family.
  2. The LORD answered, You can do it because I will help you. You will crush the Midianites as easily as if they were only one man.

Finally in the book of 1 Cor. 15 vs 10 St Paul was boasting of his ministry after encountering God’s grace. He boasted that he had worked more than any other Apostles through “God’s grace”

  1. But by God’s grace I am what I am, and the grace that he gave me was not without effect. On the contrary, I have worked harder than any of the other apostles, although it was not really my own doing, but God’s grace working with me.

When you activate God’s grace in your Iife, you will succeed where others failed. You will overcome fear and limitations. You will have a broader perspective about life and it’s challenges. You will always have challenges but you will see God’s Limitless Possibilities above the challenges and the less you remember your weakness by turning it to positivity, you activate the positive side of life. You will think less of your limitations and focus more on your unconquerable spirit to succeed.

Lesson:

God is Calling us to activate the grace which is limitless in us. That shows that despite our frailty, fragility and unworthiness, God’s grace is unmatchable, ever sufficient and limitless.

Sir Emmanuel Uzor, KSJI, FCAI
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