I just returned from a five day trip to see 10 month old Raphael, our grandson. Of course, I enjoyed seeing our daughter and her husband, too! Raphael is so wonderful and he doesn’t do anything–except be a baby! He is so delightful to me, just because he is my grandson. And of course, because he is so very very cute!

I love hearing God’s messages through Raphael. I see God’s unconditional love for me and everyone, even when we each have nothing to offer God of any value–in comparison to God’s immense value.

On my trip, I started reading Holiness by Grace: Delighting in the Joy That is Our Strength by Bryan Chapell (Crossway). The first chapter really dove-tailed with my impressions about Raphael being loveable and delightful–without him earning my favor through doing something for me.

Here are some quotes:
“When we understand that our works in themselves earn us no merit with God, then the only reason to do those works is love for him. Thus we learn to serve God not for personal gain but for his glory–not for love of self but for love of the Savior.” (pg 32)

“What we may want God to account to our credit has no currency with him, because the economy of good works is dead.” (pg 43)

“When we truly perceive how great is the heart that pardons us, then our hearts begin to beat in harmony with that heart. Honoring our Lord becomes the joy of our lives, and love for him becomes the power that fuels that joy.” (pg 35)

These are thoughts I’m still processing as I ask the Lord to reveal if I’m trying to earn his favor instead of just soaking in his unconditional love and then being motivated to love him through my service.