“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” – Hebrews 4:16
We quote it, we love it…this verse speaks to us and comforts us. But how hard is it to actually put it into practice! Why is that? As I was examining this verse, I thought of two things that keep me from the promise.
The first thing that keeps me from coming boldly to the throne is something that is a stumbling block for so many of us in so many parts of our life… our pride. While it is true that chronic illness, disability, and pain are the ultimate lessons in humility, it often seems that part of us holds even more tenaciously to the pride that is being stripped away. We are determined to keep some shred of our dignity, and sometimes we confuse the two… but that’s for another blog on another day. Our pride whispers, “you can do this, you don’t need help”, or “just fight a little harder, your strength will grow”. Pride always encourages a dependence on self. The scriptures tell us, and especially the one above, that when we are in need, we can come to the throne of God. It tells us to come boldly, not groveling or ashamed, because God has just what we need and He longs to help, if we will only ask.
The second thing that keeps me from this promise is that it is a gift. Mercy and grace cannot be earned. They are freely given by our Father, and He is generous! He will grant them each time, with no thought as to whether or not we have asked before or how much we have already received. That’s the problem, isn’t it? We are programmed not to ask for gifts! We are even taught that to accept such a generous gift without protest is rude and inconsiderate.
But this is God we are talking about here! This isn’t a stranger who longs to lavish extravagant gifts on us, it is Christ our brother and God our father. The relationship we have, the relationship they long for with us, is not one that is ruled by etiquette rules of our society. They ask for our dependence on them. They wish for us to come with bold confidence before them. They hope that we will trust in the promise. And they will never fail to provide.
Dear Lord, help us to lay aside our pride today and approach Your throne boldly. Please grant us the grace and mercy we so desperately need. We can never thank You enough for the gift of Your extravagant love! In Jesus’ Name, Amen…
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