Our way of life, steeped in grace
For by grace you were saved by faith, and it is not your doing; it the gift of God – not the result for works, so that no one may boast. For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life. Ephesians 2: 8-10
What is a way of life? I am not sure that I reflect on that often enough. The way of life that any of us has is the manner in which we engage the world; how we move out into the world and treat other people. Jesus’ followers, after His life on earth, were called followers of ‘The Way,’ or the Way of Jesus. Jesus told his followers, in John’s Gospel, on the night before he died, that the world was to know that they were His disciples by their love. Jesus called us to a way of life that involves His love, teachings, sacrifice, and an engagement with community that is about God’s creative and redemptive love. The grace of God, His mercy, is that God loved us even while we were sinners, even before we had turned to His way as the way of life. We had nothing to do with the way of love that comes simply from God’s grace. But God calls us to be partners in loving the world into life; love is the way of Jesus, after all.
We are saved by grace, a mercy that is pure, unadulterated gift. Who, in your life, has offered grace to you, even when you didn’t deserve it? How has that changed your life? How was God present in it? Sometimes, in our life with God, there are more questions than answers. “We are what God has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works…” We are God’s handiwork. Our way of life must show who we are, whose we are, and what is at the center of all things.