One of the most amazing things about God’s grace is that it looks beyond our faults and sees our needs. Grace happens when we get something that we do not deserve. Unlike a paycheck, we did not earn it or qualify for it. But God permitted us to have it. That’s God’s grace. In the book of Joshua, Joshua is engaged in many battles as he seeks to conqueror the cities of Canaan. In Joshua 1:5-8, God had promised Joshua that the Israelites would win every one of their battles, and with just one small glitch they won every battle: “ No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go.” In other words, ‘Joshua, you are going to win.’
Joshua knew that going up against the people of Canaan would require more than what he could do or his Israelite army could accomplish. He knew that it would require the grace of God to give him a victory he did not have the ability to earn or even deserve. We can all relate to Joshua. We have all been in a situation in which we needed a victory—something miraculous to happen. Though we did not have the resources, the means, or the clout to make it happen, we did have the faith. We did believe in the power of God’s grace.
Many have applied for jobs and got the job, even without the requisite experience. Others have been in impossible situations with impossible people, but the person we thought would go against us turned in our favor. That’s grace. The truth is no matter how hard we work, how much education we have, or how many breaks in life we have received because of our parents or family, we still must attribute everything that we have achieved to God’s grace. Although we may have knowledge or influential people in our lives, God is the source and provider of all of our blessings and victories. It is because of his grace that we have access to anything.
God exercises his grace because of his love for us and his desire to fulfill his divine plan of Kingdom building. This is why, if we truly have the faith and trust him, we can never lose. God’s grace makes us winners every time. We might think that we are not experiencing God’s grace because we feel like we are losing, not moving forward, in a holding pattern. Au contraire, God’s grace is still in operation and operating on each and every one of us—whether we are holding the first place trophy or the last place trophy. It is the grace of God that puts something in our spirits to keep moving forward and doing what we need to do, so that we can experience more of his grace. God’s grace humbles. God’s grace exalts. God’s grace encourages. God’s grace reveals.
Joshua lost one battle, and he went to God and asked God what happened because God had promised him every victory. God revealed to Joshua that someone had taken some property and hidden it against what God had ordered the people to do. After a thorough investigation, Joshua dealt with the problem and became victorious over the city. Sometimes God’s grace does not feel good, but it is for our good. Although we did not do what we wanted to do at that time, God’s grace always makes good on its promises.
God’s ultimate expression of grace for his people is Jesus Christ, because through Jesus Christ and his resurrection we all win in the end. This grace reminds us that when God gives us the victory, we must give him the glory.