Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Tuesday Morning...

Good Morning. It's a gorgeous day here in Indy - very mild for the end of June. Probably more true to what temps should be like, however it seems as if in the year's past it's already hot, humid and sticky! I am thankful for these temps that are conducive to the windows being thrown open so I can hear the birds singing... ah the sounds of morning.

I just finished reading the book Mistaken Identity. It's the story of Whitney Cerak and Laura Van Ryn, two Taylor University students involved in a horrible accident. One family was mourning the death of their daughter, while another was sitting by their daughter's bedside as she recovered from tremendous injuries sustained during the collision on I-69 in Indiana. After about 5 weeks it was revealed that in fact the girl who they thought had died was actually the girl recovering in the hospital. It's a wonderful story of faith, family and love... love that transcends family.... love that comes from the Lord. I highly recommend you read the book. But be prepared... have a box of tissues close at hand.

The Epilogue - written by Whitney Cerak herself, tells of how Whitney and her father always watch the movie Saving Private Ryan each Memorial Day Weekend. I hope I don't ruin the end of the the movie (SPR) if you have not seen it, (so don't read on if you want to watch the movie first - hee hee) however Tom Hanks character tells a young Private Ryan to "Earn It" Telling Private Ryan that he must do something incredible with his life to earn the deaths of the soldiers that sacrificed their lives for him. I started to think about the movie and how I felt when I first saw it. I remember feeling pride as my Grandfather was at Normandy. I remember feeling sadness for the many, many lives lost. I remember when an aging Private Ryan is standing in a cemetary (I believe it was Arlington National Cemetary). He looked so broken. As he stood before a grave stone he states that everyday he thought of what was done for him he states "I hope it was enough... I earned what you have done." The look of doubt on the old man's face... searching his wife's face, asking her "tell me I have lived a good life" I remember thinking could you imagine if we had to earn what Christ did for us? Would it ever be enough? No, we would always come up short. Everyday I think of what Christ did for me. I do not have to "earn it" just accept it. Because of what Christ did for us I want to glorify him by doing good. Living a life that is pleasing to the Lord. I know that no amount of good deeds will "earn it" but the good I do, I pray will be instrumental in furthering His kingdom. I don't want to wonder "did I live a good life". I want to live a good life, the best I can w/ God's help to be a disciple. I want to live a good life all the way home to heaven. It won't be a perfect life. It will be full of ups and downs, successes and failures. God said I love you, you don't have to "earn it" I will give it to you, just accept it! One earns a wage, one accepts a gift. God's grace through His son is a gift - it's not a wage we must earn. The wages of sin is death - Jesus is the gift of eternal life!

So today I pray you are not under the stronghold of feeling you must earn the grace the Lord wants to lavish on you. Accept it freely, knowing that the sacrifice Christ made was out of love for you and for me. For all of us. It's for all of us. We could never earn it, no matter how hard we labor... focus that energy on serving Him, worshipping Him, sharing Him and loving Him!


Yolanda said...


Good morning from a beautiful morning here in Kansas. Kristen, you have such a heart, and talent to express the love you have for Jesus.

Thank you for sharing that with us! Thank You Lord, for the gift You share with Krisen and I. Eternity!


Kristen Schiffman said...

Amen, sister!

Thank you for these words. I needed them today.

Tracy said...

Amen! Beautifully spoken. Especially love "One earns a wage, one accepts a gift." Praise God for the unfathomable gift of his grace!

Lisa said...

Hi Kristen!
Thanks for stopping by my blog! I commented back to you there, but I wanted to come over and say hi.

Love the thoughts in this blog. Great insights!

I'll be hopping over, again.
Lisa :)