Lent 2, Friday, Year A

Inspired by Romans 3:21-31

“Then what becomes of boasting?  It is excluded.  By what law?  By that of works?  No, but by the law of faith.  For we hold that a person is justified by faith apart from works prescribed by the law.”  Romans 3:27-28 (NRSV)

As Christians, we endeavor to live faithfully and in accordance with the will of our Lord.  We study his word, pray in his Son’s name, and seek him in the ordinary places of our lives.  We’re cognizant of the fact that our actions reflect on him, and that others will form an opinion of God based on how we follow him.  It’s a lot of pressure to always try to do the ‘right’ thing.

Unfortunately we sometimes respond to that pressure by putting more emphasis on what behaviors are ‘right’ and ‘Christian,’ and less emphasis on the saving grace of Christ.  As a result, we end up misrepresenting God with the very actions we uphold as being characteristic of him.

God is holy and righteous, and he does desire us to emulate his ways.  However, our salvation does not depend on how well we manage to accomplish that.  Those who are able to follow their interpretation of the moral teachings of the bible are no better Christians than are those who struggle daily with their baser instincts.  Christ’s righteousness is sufficient for all, and his grace covers our sins, no matter how great or how minimal they may be.

Strive to do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God.  However successful or unsuccessful you are in your endeavors, Christ’s righteousness will justify you before the Lord.

Let us pray.  Righteous God, you did for us what we could not do for ourselves.  Remind us of our reliance on your grace, that we may not judge others according to our own arbitrary standards.  Through Christ our Lord, Amen.