Logos: Luke 14:8-11
When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet, do not sit down at the place of honor, in case someone more distinguished than you has been invited by your host; and the host who invited both of you may come and say to you, "Give this person your place," and then in disgrace you would start to take the lowest place. But when you are invited, go and sit down at the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he may say to you, "Friend, move up higher"; then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at the table with you. For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted. (Luke 14:8-11)Are you on Facebook? Do you notice all of the birthday wishes that are posted for someone's birthday? It's a cool thing, to be remembered by your friends, no doubt. I have a friend who always posts, "Have a happy birthday; you deserve it." I know she doesn't mean anything bad by it; she means it to be a compliment, but it always makes me cringe.
Please, God, don't give me what I deserve.
The heart of grace, I think, is that it is God's love, given to us when we don't deserve it. The problem comes when we start believing that we DO deserve it. That we have earned it.
I'm not advocating some kind of self-hate, where we think we are scum, worthy only to be wiped off on the ground like slime. We are beloved children of God, made worthy by God's actions toward us. We all are. The problem with thinking otherwise is that we begin to believe that we are worthy and someone else is not. If we earn grace; if we earn a higher place at the table, then we begin to believe we did it on our own. We begin to forget the grace of God. And we forget that grace is given to all; not just to us.
It's a matter of pride, isn't it? And pride is a sin that can separate us from God.