Some of the most encouraging times in life can be those when we hear about how the LORD has been working in others’ lives. These times act as excellent reminders that we serve a real and active God that will surely not fail us; He is always faithful. Remembrance of the times when God has come through for us, and for others, is essential to remaining faithful to our faithful God in a world that is continually distracted by its’ own anxieties, plans, blunders, and much more. With these things in mind, I’d like to share with you some very encouraging letters that have recently been written to me and to the entire community of “Embracing God’s Grace” readers alike. Hopefully, you’ll be able to rejoice with me in the work that the Holy Spirit has been doing in the hearts and lives of others!
“Dear Embracing God’s Grace AKA J-Flame,
I just wanted to send you a message and say that my life has been different since meeting you back in the summer of 2009. When we met for our project hangout at Kaleo I knew God had a great plan for you. We didn’t know each other at all but had a good connection between loving God and loving Christian Rap. I have to say that learning that you were a blogger, I was intrigued to read your stuff. I did and have kept up with your blog and have even used your blog to help disciple other people. Sometimes I feel like we can talk about the Bible all we want but it is people like you who bring the Scripture to life and help make it easier to communicate with guys who are not believers or who are new believers. Not only has your blog impacted my ministry but it has also impacted my life. My wife and I for some time would read your blogs together and talk about how it made us feel and how God was speaking to us through you. No matter how difficult life may be, or if you are down and out, I believe that J-Flame is truly anointed by God and God has big plans for you. I encourage anyone who may read this, that whenever you are doubting God or just having a bad day, I challenge you to read his blog and see how God speaks to you through it.” (Aaron Spelzhaus, Tennessee)
“To the blog known as Embracing God’s Grace
and its author, Justin Meyer:
It would be difficult to deny the surplus of modern Christian blogs. It seems to be a trend as the church in general fails to deliver the Word of God in its essence. Rather, contemporary Christians settle for what is acceptable and polished. What matters more these days is making Christian faith shiny, exciting, and “PC.”
But enough ranting. There is good in this, as well. It is the beauty of this modern age; you certainly have to take the bad with the good, but the good is there.
With the advent of the Christian blogging community comes an opportunity to find the Truth in a different—perhaps unexpected—way. The internet has a variety of uses, but how many people would think that learning about the Creator and Savior of the universe is one of them??
This blog, Embracing God’s Grace, is among the good.
The content is God-centered as much as possible and frequently encouraging. Any time it is not “encouraging,” per se, is when it is convicting or a glimpse at a personal situation. But even the more subjective pieces pose questions that we all face. It is usually helpful to know that someone else has “been there, done that” (to be a little cliché), even if you are not necessarily acquainted with the person.
But what is better, I actually have the privilege of saying I know the blog’s creator! It is a different situation when you know the heart and mind of the person behind the keyboard. It makes it more relational.
That is where I am most blessed. The posts on this blog are relevant. They are not superfluous theological debates or existential questions. These posts come down to the every-man, the questions about God and His followers that have been around for centuries.
Though of late I have been a less-frequent visitor, I have been reading the thoughts of J.M. as I am able for about a year. What the reader can always take away from the thoughts of this soldier of Christ is that he cares. He cares more than many that I have met, and that makes his blog stand out. He cares about the kingdom of God; he cares about the spiritual well-being of fellow believers; and he cares about keeping it real.
- Being fake is not allowed.
- Being shallow is impossible.
- Brushing aside the tough stuff does not happen.
The simple fact is…life is tough. We need God’s grace to make it through. We need to be real. Blogs such as Embracing God’s Grace make the journey a bit easier, or, on the dark days, at least give you someone to relate to, someone who might express what you are feeling without even knowing you are also feeling it.
I can recall probably at least a handful of times when I have encountered this scenario: I log in to my own blog and discover one of J.M.’s new posts. (If our Omniscient Father really wants to have fun with me, I will put off reading it for a while; hey, I’m only human here!) When I do read the new thought-provoking or exhorting or heartbreaking piece, I must say that it pierces my heart in an incredible way more often than not. Usually it is because I am in the exact same place, and I need to read that post.
God works in incredible ways. He speaks through so many things to reach His children.
He even uses blogs.
To J.M.: You are a blessing to people you do not even know about. Your faithfulness to this mini-ministry will result in much fruit and many blessings. Do not give up, even when the rest of us feel like it!
May the work of Embracing God’s Grace continue to reach the lost, uplift the redeemed, and glorify God. And if you are not a frequent visitor, or a visitor at all, perhaps it is time to mix things up a bit?
Blessings.” (Carolyn Longpre, Idaho)
I am forever thankful for the very encouraging words of these two brothers and sisters in Christ and their impact in my life, as well as their continual prayers, as they seek to serve God daily. It is my prayer today, and hope, that you would find some encouragement in these letters as well. When we seek to be faithful with the gifts that God has bestowed upon us, then fruit will surely come. The great news about it all is that all glory goes back to Him! All the gifts that we ever have come from the Living God who has been so gracious to fervently seek after the redemption of our hearts and souls.
May the peace and strength of the LORD rest upon you this upcoming Thanksgiving Break, and may you be ever more aware of your need to fully embrace God’s grace.
P.S. If you have stories of how God has recently been at work within your life, then please share it in the comment section below, so that I can praise the LORD alongside you for all that He is doing in the world around us!