Grace Is Just a Door
JUNE 7, 2016
Sometimes I wake up at two or three in the morning with thoughts racing, unable to go back to sleep. I'll often pour a bath in the middle of the night and float in the dark. Sometimes I have to write my thoughts down to get them out of my head or I won't be able to relax, so I grab my phone and start taking notes. That's where this little devotional came from.
I pray and meditate in the tub. It’s the closest thing I have to a regular “quiet time.” It feels sacramental, a visible sign of an invisible reality. My anxiety floats naked in the enveloping warmth of the Spirit. I breathe. I try to calm down.
Sometimes I wake up at two or three in the morning with thoughts racing, unable to go back to sleep. I’ll often pour a bath in the middle of the night and float in the dark. Sometimes I have to write my thoughts down to get them out of my head or I won’t be able to relax, so I grab my phone and start taking notes. That’s where this little devotional came from.
It was the night before I was supposed to be a guest on Front Porch with the Fitzes to talk about my book, The Seed: A True Myth. Jessica Thompson had asked me to pick a scripture verse and talk about it for a few minutes. I figured I’d come up with something from John 17 because of its connection to my book. I wasn’t exactly sure what I was going to say until I woke up at 2:30 AM. The thoughts wouldn’t stop coming, so I hit the tub and started writing.
By the way, the podcast was a lot of fun and way more than a fat, naked DJ floating in the bath thinking about the Bible. Don’t miss Front Porch with the Fitzes | Episode 37: Florida Man, The Seed, and John 17.
Jesus prays that we would be one, just like he and the Father are one, the Father in Jesus and Jesus in the Father… and Jesus, by his Spirit, in us. (In the previous chapter, John 16, he talks about the work of the Spirit.) In John 17, Jesus asks that we would know and experience the glory and love that he shared with the Father before the foundation of the earth. That’s talking about eternity, and that’s a mighty long time… or it’s no time at all. That experience of glory—of the Father’s love that Jesus asks for on our behalf—comes by the Spirit, the Spirit in us that cries out Abba, Daddy!
So here in this intimate moment of prayer, we see God the eternal Son who, before the foundation of the earth, knew the love of the eternal Father in the communion of the eternal Spirit who is the very delight the Father and Son have in each other. And our high priest, God the Son, prays we would be one in the glory and love of this Trinity.
Do you think God the Father will say yes to that prayer from God the Son? Of course he will.
Now here’s the thing, we talk and write a lot about grace: the message that because of Jesus’ finished work, God’s not mad at his kids. Grace is mind blowing. We have to use words like “radical” and “amazing” to describe it. But grace is just a door. It’s access to share in the relationship of Father, Son, and Spirit, to become one with God. That’s what Jesus asked for in John 17.
Grace is the door to the Trinity, and it’s always open. Grace is just an open door.
One more thing, the path to that open door of grace is weakness and brokenness and failure and sin. When you walk that path to the door of grace, you don’t even have to knock. I mean, there’s nothing on the hinges… just an opening made out of the wood of Jesus’ cross.
Step through the door into the eternal relationship of love between Father and Son in the shared delight of the Spirit. Come just as you are, burdened and broken, and you will hear, “Welcome. Welcome Home, child.”
Click here to get your copy of The Seed: A True Myth. All proceeds go to support the ministry of Key Life.