16 For this reason it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace … (Romans 4).
I can’t believe I remember this, but a popular song in my childhood had the lyrics:
Love and marriage, love and marriage,
Go together like a horse and carriage;
In any kind of weather,
You can’t have one without the other.
Here we see faith and grace in the same way: you can’t have one without the other. You can’t have faith without God’s grace, for faith is in accordance with grace, i.e. it is by means of it. You can have works without grace, but you cannot have faith without grace. Faith comes by means of grace. Had God not been gracious to me, from the start I would never have had faith in Him, nor would I even now remain faithful to Him.
Can you even imagine anyone standing around in heaven with thumbs in their armpits, strutting around boasting in the faith they had to get them there? No, the only thing we have to boast in is the grace of God in our lives. “Why, O why would He ever have pointed grace my way?”
Dear Lord, why, O why did You point grace our way? And why, O why do You continue to point it? All we can do is humbly ask You to pour out more and more of it! By grace, grant us more grace This Day, that our faith might grow stronger and stronger — in Jesus’ name! Amen.