Romans 4:4-5 NIV
Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation. However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness.
We all know the difference between a gift and our wages. Wages come from the use of our time, effort and talent on behalf of someone else. My dad used to say to me, “If there has been no sweat on your brow, you should not be looking for a paycheck.” That was a wage.
But a gift is something totally different. Usually it is not something that is expected and most often it brings a sense of joy and excitement. Perhaps you deserve that gift, but it is still something that someone wanted to give to you above your wages or above what you expected from them.
This is the point the Bible makes about Abraham. God was not obligated to bless him. Abraham, although a fine example of faith was like us in many ways. He was imperfect, sinned, and fell short of doing all that God requires. God was under no obligation to bless Abraham, and he is under no obligation to bless us.
But God did bless Abraham. He gave him great wealth and fame. He made him the father of a great nation. And, most importantly, he made him the ancestor of Jesus, the Saviour of the world.
God has done the same for us. Although he is under no obligation to bless us, he has. We live in freedom, in all of the benefits and luxuries of a developed nation. We face a major Pandemic, but we do so with a health care system that is first rate. We have medicine & equipment that can save lives. Many, many people around the world have no medicine or have no money to purchase health services & medicine or they have no health system at all. We are so incredibly blessed by God.
He simply says, “Trust me.” Trust that all you have comes from me. Trust that I will provide all that you need for your body and soul. Trust that even in this crisis God knows your needs and loves you. Trust that your sins are forgiven through Jesus and eternal life is yours.
We did not earn any of these blessings. God was not obligated to give them. But he has, and he does. They are all his free gifts.
Father in heaven, thank you so much for what you have blessed me with. Lord make me grateful always for what I have been given and be with those in desperate need. Amen.