We need a remedy
The dawn of 2022 carried with it a sense of monotony and frustration. Challenges embarked on in 2021 were not instantaneously resolved when the clock ticked midnight and 2022 arrived. Rather, the year began for many with the realisation that 2022 may continue with the same painful hangovers from 2021.
The all-consuming COVID-19 pandemic continues to bring painful consquences to mental, social, and spiritual health. Our lives continue, and with it comes other personal challenges and grief not easily resolved with the changing of the calendar.
What we really need this year is a remedy.
The word offers us fraudulent cures of lusty concoctions formulated to provide temporary self-satisfaction. As conditioned lab rats, we repeatedly throw self-inflicted pity-parties, reinforced by external validation and the numbing reprieve from our pain. We continually become more dissatisfied and self-absorbed with our daily realities.
At times we may subscribe our thinking to intentional ignorance thus, removing Christ from our inner-thought vocabulary. Furthering our attempts to substitute the essential ingredients for the remedy recipe.
Growing in grace
The remedy to deception and destruction is growing in grace and knowledge of Christ. This is the remedy that we need in 2022.
In 2 Peter chapter 3, verses 17-18a, Peter writes, “You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. But grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”
The above verses contrast stunted with mature growth.
A tree which does not grow will lose its stability in the soil, will easily be blown over in the current of deceptive teaching and worldly ways. This tree eventually dies. Alternatively, a tree with roots firmly secured in God’s grace, grows and remains steadfast. This tree withstands challenge and is not seduced by deceptive teaching.
Speaking on this John Piper says, “As Dr. Widen would say, ‘It's the greatest unused resource in all the world.’ It is the wealth of God's kindness; the riches of his mercy; the soothing ointment of his forgiveness; the free and undeserved, but lavishly offered hope of eternal life” (Piper, 1982).
It is grace which we intimately yearn for. Moreover, it is the root of that grace, faith which we are to mature through the knowledge of God. Believing in the promises provided in Scripture and secured through Christ.
John Piper goes on to write, “Grace is what we must have when we come to die. Grace is our only ray of hope when the future darkens over with storm clouds of fear.”
Powerful words, for a weary generation desperately seeking hope in our unpredictable future.
How do we accept this grace? How do we develop strong immovable roots? Where do we receive the recipe for this remedy called grace?
In 2 Peter chapter 1, verse 2, he begins his letter with the opening words, “May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord.”
The recipe for the remedy is the knowledge of our future in God’s grace.
If we understood only a small portion of the future God has created for us. If we began to believe that our deepest desires will be satisfied, that every good thing of this world will be perfected, relationships will be permanently restored, and every broken or painful situation will be restored.
Imagine the world that God has prepared for those who love Him.
“Live close to the Cross and search the mystery of His wounds. An increase of love to Jesus and a more perfect apprehension of His love to us is one of the best tests of growth in grace” (Begg & Spurgeon, 2003).
Kiwi-born with British roots, Jessica Gardiner drinks tea religiously while her dinner table discussions reverberate between the sovereignty of God, global politics, and the public health system. Having experienced churches from conservative to everything but, Jessica writes out a desire for Christian orthodoxy and biblical literacy in her generation. Jessica is married to fellow young writer Blake Gardiner.