Friday, April 27, 2012
"Better Than I Deserve"
Now my husband will be quick to tell you that this phrase was not something he came up with. It was a common response given by one of our dear Christian brothers. Every time someone would ask him how he was, he replied "Better than I deserve." These few words said a lot and so impressed my husband that he acquired the habit of telling others the same thing. It is definitely a conversation starter. People wonder what on earth we mean when we say that.
For the Christian, we know that salvation is a gift given by God through the pain and suffering of His only Son upon the cross. Over and over the scripture makes it clear that God first loved us before we ever loved Him (1 John 4:19). We also know that there is no righteousness or merit in us. We are all sinners, and we deserve God's wrath (Romans 3:10). Ephesians 2:1-9 tells us that we were dead in our sins, but it was Christ, not any works which we have done, who made us whole by His righteousness imputed to us. He took our sins and gave us His righteousness in a great transaction that we can never repay.
Do we understand how simple the message is to share with others? There is really nothing difficult about telling someone this news, and a simple conversation starter often does the trick. Jesus was a master at telling parables in order to get people thinking. We just make things too complicated at times.
When the workman was ready to leave, he told me how my husband had responded to his question about how he was. He said he thought about that phrase "Better than I deserve" all afternoon while he worked. He said, "You know, he is right. I am better than I deserve." I then had a chance to tell him about our Christian friend who always replied in this fashion and how we really are better off because of God's great mercy and love towards us.
Maybe you can use this phrase when others greet you and inquire as to how you are as well. Some interesting opportunities are out there for us to share the Good News of our Savior. We just need to keep our eyes open and be ready! Selah!