A young girl, just starting high school, realized from the very first day that she would not be able to stay in her English literature class. The work was too hard, the lessons too involved. She just couldn’t do it.
With tears, she begged her dad to please go to the teacher and remove her from the class. Though he didn’t think that was the right course of action, he decided to meet with the teacher. His daughter went with him, trying desperately not to cry.
There were other students in the teacher’s office and upon seeing the young student’s discomfort, she politely asked them to leave so she could give the father and daughter her full attention.
Her Dad carefully explained the situation, asking the teacher to please let his daughter leave the class which would, hopefully, help her get over this hurdle so that she would have a good college experience.
The teacher, with a smile on her face and compassion in her voice replied with this question, “If I were to give you an A for the course, would you stay in the class?”
With a shocked look on her tear-stained face, the young woman started. Then, she smiled when the full realization of what this implied hit her.
“Why yes, I would love to take your class! I think I could keep up and I would certainly try my best!” she exclaimed.
So, with a pen in her hand and opening the class ledger book, the teacher found the girl’s name and placed an “A” under the title of ‘final grade’.
The young student whispered a happy, “thank you” to the teacher and left the room with her Dad, now a totally different person and ready to tackle the class.
You may be thinking how you wished a teacher had done that for you when you were in school! Me too! But what I want to share with you is that in real life, God has already given us an A.
We are already free. Jesus has done it all for us. You and I keep thinking we have to do it all ourselves, but in truth, we already have it. We should live now without pressure. We need to just jump in and enjoy life in Him. This reality should keep us from giving up. For if we already have an ‘A’, we shouldn’t live as if we have an ‘F’?
But how do I know this is real truth? Well, let’s look at some scripture verses.
Manna from Heaven
“And you were dead in your trespasses and sins,” (you and I had an F) in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world,…but God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our sins, made us alive together with Christ, and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places, in Christ Jesus. (we now have an A!).
However, because God did this for us, we will never boast: “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works.” Ephesians 2: 1-10
But you may be thinking, “Well, if the teacher is just going to give her an A, she could just skip class and do nothing!” But think about it. If someone gave you a gift like that, wouldn’t you instead do everything you possibly could to do right? That’s where our joy comes from in the Christian walk – we know Christ is for us and living within us so that we can keep on.
God also realizes that apart from Him, we can’t do anything. So He sent a helper, His Holy Spirit, to fill us and direct us as we live on this earth. “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.” Acts 1:8
And God knows that those who won’t follow Him will only miss out so He says in II Peter 1:9-10, “For he who lacks these qualities is blind or shortsighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins. Therefore, brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble.”
So why did I write about this in my blog? Because, you and I are starting a New Year and it is so easy to fall into the trap of thinking, “there is just too much to do; I can’t do it all; I am not accomplishing enough; everyone else is getting it done but I can’t, etc.”
I want us to have victory – and joy – in our life instead of feeling like prisoners in a jail of our own making.
Yes, we need to set goals and priorities and make lists of all we need to do. But my prayer is that you first consult with the Lord about what He wants you to do and then, knowing that He has already given you an ‘A’, carry on with joy!
(I heard this story and scripture references at church by my pastor, Pete Briscoe of Bent Tree Bible Fellowship)
Next week: Back to the basics as we talk about putting everything in its place.