Being Rescued Changes EVERYTHING

by Sep 29, 2011

Many of us, like the rebellious prodigal son, have been rescued from ourselves by our gracious and compassionate heavenly father. We’ve seen the depth of our sin and the consequences of our sin, and we’ve accepted God’s grace poured out through his son Jesus on the cross. But still, when we’re honest with ourselves, we have to admit that we still have tendencies one way or the other.

Maybe you’re still an outward rebel, and you still try to avoid God by ignoring all the rules. You don’t really take God very seriously.

Or maybe you’re still a self-righteous rebel, and you still try to avoid God by FOLLOWING all the rules.  You take yourself way too seriously. Or maybe you’re both, depending on the situation.

Here’s the thing: God didn’t rescue us just to let us keep living our lives the same way we always have, secure in the knowledge that we have a ticket into heaven. He rescued us so he could change everything about our lives right now.

The father in this story didn’t waste a single second planning the feast for his rescued son. He said, “Get the fattened calf now!  It’s time to start our new life together right now!”

Being rescued means everything in life changes. Everything! It means you see God differently. You see yourself differently. You see life differently.  And through that, God gives you the power to overcome the rebel inside, or the self-righteous person inside.

When you come to church…  The rebel inside will try to make you casual and flippant in your worship, since God isn’t too far above you anyway. Or the self-righteous person inside will try to make you deadly serious in your worship, to make sure you worship our holy God in complete holiness, and earn his favor. But if you know you’ve been rescued, you’ll know exactly how sinful you are, and how holy God is, and you’ll worship out of sheer joy for the grace he’s lavished on you.

When you’re going through a really tough time in life… The rebel inside will try to tell you that it’s OK to do whatever it takes to get out of the tough time: lie, cheat, steal, whatever. God won’t mind. Or the self-righteous person inside will try to tell you that you don’t deserve this suffering because you’ve been faithful to God, so you end up mad at God. But if you’re one of the rescued, you’ll see God’s glory and you’ll see your sin, and you’ll see how God is using the tough time to make you more like him.

When you’re dealing with conflict in your family…  The rebel inside will make you want to look out for your own interests above all else.  You’ll only love your wife, husband, brother or sister as long as they’re meeting your needs.Or the self-righteous person inside will convince you that it’s all the other person’s fault.  You’ll keep blaming them for everything that’s wrong in the relationship. But if you know you’re rescued, you can love someone whether or not they meet your needs, because you know God has already met all your needs! You can confront other people out of love and a desire to see them become more like Jesus, not out of blame and anger and frustration.

When you meet a homeless guy on the street…  The self-righteous person inside will try to tell you that he’s getting what he deserves, since he obviously hasn’t been as faithful, and responsible, and hard-working as you have. Or the rebel inside will try to tell you that he’s a victim of society, and he just needs a handout. He doesn’t need religion pushed on him. But if know you’ve been rescued, you’ll know you’re just as spiritually poor as he is. You’re both in need of God’s grace, so you won’t have any problem giving him what he needs, physically and spiritually.

That’s one of the biggest things about being rescued: you start developing a strong passion to see other people rescued too. Once you understand just what God has saved you from, you just want to see other people experience the same thing.

Being rescued changes everything!