A short reading and prayer for today
This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. Romans 1:17 NLT
I once heard about a group of rowdy young people who had too much time on their hands and decided that it would be great fun to push a piano down the stairs in the building where they were meeting and see what happened. With great gusto they launched the piano and the result was inevitable. The piano was wrecked. Hearing what had happened an elderly man decided to take the battered and damaged piano on as a project and he spent the following year restoring it to its former glory. Don’t you love stories like that? We all love hearing when bad situations have been turned to good. But when we look at the world today the problems are so overwhelming and at the heart of them is the fact that humankind is out of step with God. Here in Paul’s amazing letter to the Romans he is going to set out with meticulous care how we can be put right with God. Nothing could possibly be more important than this.
And the key to receiving this transformational good news is faith. Everything turns on faith, so we had better be absolutely clear that we know what it means. We exercise faith every day. We have faith in our nearest and dearest, in the person who drives our train, in our doctors and garage mechanics. Our lives are made up of a tapestry of faith-based relationships. Our faith in them means that we are confident of them and are happy to rely upon them. Paul is saying that we need to have that kind of relationship with God, but with God it is fundamentally different from other trusting relationships because he is totally trustworthy. He will never let us down. He sent Jesus into the world to be our Saviour, and through dying on the cross, Jesus has made it possible for us to be made right with God. There is nothing that we can do either to impress God or earn our salvation. We simply need to open our hands, day by day, and receive by faith God’s freedom and generosity.
How would you describe your faith in God?
Loving God, thank you for sending Jesus into this disordered world. Help me to receive by faith all the gifts that you want to pour into my life. Amen
Photo – Mussenden Temple, Downhill, Castlerock