He has given us his very great and precious promises. 2 Peter 1:4
In our moments of greatest failure, it can be easy to believe it’s too late for us, that we’ve lost our chance at a life of purpose and worth. That’s how Elias, a former inmate at a maximum-security prison in New York, described feeling as a prisoner. “I had broken . . . promises, the promise of my own future, the promise of what I could be.”
It was Bard College’s “Prison Initiative” college degree program that began to transform Elias’ life. While in the program, he participated on a debate team, which in 2015 debated a team from Harvard—and won. For Elias, being “part of the team . . . [was] a way of proving that these promises weren’t completely lost.”
A similar transformation happens in our hearts when we begin to understand that the good news of God’s love in Jesus is good news for us too. It’s not too late, we begin to realize with wonder. God still has a future for me.
And it’s a future that can neither be earned nor forfeited, dependent only on God’s extravagant grace and power (2 Peter 1:2–3). A future where we’re set free from the despair in the world and in our hearts into one filled with His “glory and goodness” (v. 3). A future secure in Christ’s unimaginable promises (v. 4); and a future transformed into the “freedom and glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:21).
Why can it be difficult for us to accept “unearned” grace and love? How does it touch your heart to consider that in God’s eyes you have a future filled with unimaginable beauty?
Jesus, some days all I can see is the ways I’ve disappointed myself and others, the ways I’ve broken the future I’ve dreamed of. Help me to see the unchanging beauty of the future I find in You.
Second Peter 1 reminds us that God is the One who provides the power we need to live our life in Christ (v. 3). One of the ways He does this is by giving us the Holy Spirit. The characteristics we display—the fruit of the indwelling Spirit—have strong implications for the way we live (vv. 5–9; see Galatians 5:22–23). But whose fruit is it? It’s the Spirit’s. The Holy Spirit is the agent, the source, and the power that produces that fruit.
Adapted from Live Free: A Fresh Look at the Fruit of the Spirit. Read it at DiscoverySeries.org/Q0214.