Naughty or Nice
As Christmas approaches and more people talk about buying gifts, taking pictures with Santa, and decorating, the topic of making the naughty or nice list tends to come up as well. Not only was I in a conversation about this topic last week, but it was also mentioned at church this past Sunday which confirmed wanting to share what has been on my heart.
If you looked back this year which list do you feel like you deserve to be on? The Naughty or Nice list? Several parents tell their kids that if they have been good and made the nice list they will receive gifts from Santa; however if they have been naughty and made the bad list they might not receive anything. At least, that is what the world says right? It asks, “Were you good or bad this year?”
The interesting thing that I had never thought about until a few weeks ago is that this is exactly the opposite of how a relationship with Jesus works. With Him, there is no ‘list’. There is no works based formula of “if this, then that.” It’s all about grace. Following Jesus isn’t about keeping track of what you have done right or what you have done wrong. It’s not about making sure you are on the nice list in order to get what you have been asking for.
Following Jesus is solely based on His love. Once you make the decision to accept Him as Savior you are automatically on the nice list. It doesn’t matter what mistakes you have made or will make because He doesn’t punish you for your sin (Psalm 103:10). Instead, He forgives you, loves you, pursues you, and gives you good gifts.
Your relationship with Jesus is based on grace. You will never have to earn or buy a gift from Him, because Jesus has already paid for it all! Let’s stop teaching about religion and works! Let’s start teaching about grace! Remember the good news today – you are on His nice list!
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.” Ephesians 2:8