The Case for Grace

GRACE: Locusts And Field Mice by Lee Strobel

February 21, 2019

From: The Case for Grace I imagined the bounty of food that’s put before Penelope three times a day – and which, like more preschoolers, she routinely picks at with casual disinterest.  “How did you manage to eat?” I asked Stephanie. “Actually, food was plentiful in the country, except in the winter,” she said.  “I could steal whatever I wanted.  There were fruit fields, vegetable fields, and rice fields.  As long as I didn’t get caught, I could eat. “I remember following a group of homeless children.  At night they would crawl on their bellies into the fields and get some of what we called sweet melons.  I thought, I could do that.  So there was a season where every night I would wait for the watchman of the field [...]

GRACE: “Garbage, Dust, Bastard, Alien Devil” by Lee Strobel

February 14, 2019

From: The Case for Grace Here was a child not much older than a toddler, cast adrift in a frightening and dangerous place that was predisposed to reject her – a world without grace.  “You must have been panic-stricken,” I said. “Not at first.  I thought, I’ll stand here on the platform, and my uncle will come for me.  But when evening came, the trains stopped.  The trainmaster came out and asked me what I was doing there.  I told him I was waiting for my uncle – and that was the first time someone called me a toogee,” she said, almost spitting out the epithet. “What does that mean?” “It’s a very nasty word, like using the n-word today.  It basically means half-breed or child of two bloods, and yet it’s more [...]

GRACE: The Orphan—God’s Grace Goes Far Beyond Forgiveness by Lee Strobel

February 7, 2019

From: The Case for Grace Our understanding of Christianity cannot be better than our grasp of adoption.  Of all the gifts of grace, adoption is the highest. (J. I. Packer) Stephanie Fast has never known her father.  She suspects he was an American soldier – possibly an officer – who fought in the Korean conflict that started in 1950.  There’s even a chance he’s still alive somewhere.  There’s no way to tell. I managed to track down Stephanie, that fleeting voice from the radio, and flew from Denver to meet her in her tidy townhouse in a wooded neighborhood in the Pacific Northwest.  She’s petite at five-foot-three, her black hair falling in soft waves past her shoulders, her almost eyes animated.  Her husband, Darryl, a [...]

GRACE: The Mistake by Lee Strobel

January 31, 2019

From: The Case for Grace Someday You’ll Understand Psychoanalysis daily demonstrates to us how youthful persons lose their religious belief as soon as the authority of the father breaks down. (Sigmund Freud) It wasn’t until my mother was on her deathbed that she confirmed what years of therapy had only suggested to me: I was a mistake, at least in the eyes of my father. My parents started with three children – first a girl, then two boys – and my dad threw himself into fatherhood.  He coached his sons in Little League, led a Cub Scout troop, headed the high school boosters club, went on family vacations, and attended gymnastics meets and graduations. Then after a lengthy time gap came the unexpected news that my mother was [...]

GRACE: The Search For Grace by Lee Strobel

January 17, 2019

From: The Case for Grace God waits to be wanted.  Too bad with many of us he waits so long, so very long, in vain. (A. W. Tozer) He was leaning back in his leather recliner in the wood-paneled den, his eyes darting back and forth between the television set and me, as if he didn’t deign to devote his full attention to our confrontation.  In staccato bursts, he would lecture and scold and shout, but his eyes never met mine. It was the evening before my high-school graduation, and my dad had caught me lying to him – big-time. Finally, he snapped his chair forward and shifted to look fully into my face, his eyes angry slits behind his glasses.  He held up his left hand, waving his pinky like a taunt as he pounded each and every word: [...]

GRACE: The Case For Grace, Preface by Lee Strobel

January 10, 2019

From: The Case for Grace God’s grace is the sole basis for both new life and spiritual vitality. (Stanley Grenz) Defining grace can be as simple as one declarative sentence: “Grace is the favor shown by God to sinners.”  From there, it can be expounded upon in volumes of theological treatises, but at its core it is an unmerited and unconditional gift of God’s love that we can never earn or deserve. Grace enables us to respond to God, enfolds us into his family, and empowers us to change.  Theologian Thomas C. Oden said grace is necessary “to know truth, avoid sin, act well, pray fittingly, desire salvation, begin to have faith and persevere in faith.”  Grace, he said, is nothing less than “the motivating power of the [...]