Tuesday, February  8, 2000

   For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith -- and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God -- not by works, so that no one can boast.
    -- Ephesians 2:8-9, New International Version

   Falling to my certain doom, I was truly relieved when the harness tightened and I zipped down the wire.  I could not see the rope, as I was attached to my back, I had to trust that it would catch me as I fall.
    This past weekend, I had the pleasure of taking our confirmation class to a camp where they took part in what was called a ropes course.  This is a combination of high and low elements.  It seems, the biggest barrier to being able to successfully complete the challenge course was our own self.
    Our salvation, the grace that is imparted to us, is a gift that does not rely on something we can or can not do.  Rather, the grace that is imparted to us from God is by us having FAITH.  It is not something earned, not something we get because we did good things, it is a pure and simple gift to all who open their heart and soul to the Giver.
    The greatest thing about this weekend was not zipping down the zipline, jumping off the pole, or even falling.  The greatest thing about this weekend was knowing those present, were present because they have Faith in God and are seeking to understand more about what God has done in their life and what God will continue to do in their life.  If you fall, is there something that will catch you?

   Thank you, generous Father, for the gift of grace, the gift of faith, the gift of salvation, and most of all, the gift of Jesus.  Not only do you help me when I stumble, but you catch me when I fall.  Thank you.  Create in me a heart that is brave and pure so I might be able to face all that is before me.  And allow me to help others as they stumble or fall.  In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.