Every year I vow, some might call it resolving, that I will be a better Christian than the previous year. I am going to sin less if I sin at all. The mistakes of the year will be left behind in my new and improved lifestyle.
We are seven days into the new year, and I already need grace. If I am honest with you, I needed it after one day, but I gave myself a mulligan for the first failure. By now, there is a long list of my godless behavior that is too extensive to ignore or excuse.
During the Christmas season, I repeat the same stories every year about a baby coming as God in the flesh, the promised Messiah, and the one who saves people from their sins. It is a message I am sure people get tired of hearing over and over. Some may think, “Yeah, I understand grace; let’s talk about something else. Maybe a topic more relevant to today like marriage or parenting or how to be a good person.”
Here we are just seven days past the new year, and I am reminded why this truth must be repeatedly shared. Our sin is ever-present, and we do not live up to our standards, let alone God’s. As John says at the beginning of his account of the life of Jesus, we need “grace upon grace.”