Advent 2012: Day

The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men


Today's Text: Titus 2:11-3:7

Text: Titus 2:11-3:7

Can you believe it’s Day 28 already of Advent? I love the scripture we land on today. It is full of promise and encouragement.

But—“When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit.” [Titus 3:4-5, NLT]

Can we look at that again? Because I need the reminder daily that it’s “Not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy.”

His mercy.

We are to encourage one another. [v. 15]
We are to turn from sinful pleasures. [v. 12]

But it is not what we do, it’s His grace. It’s His gift to us. [v. 11, 14]

And because of this gift, our lives on this earth are changed–we are changed. We are promised eternal life with Him, and we are charged with sharing this promise.

Who can you be sharing the gospel with in this next season? This new year? Who can you be praying for?

  • Yepi Games

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  • I really appreciate this devotion, it helps me to be in touch with the lord every time, everywhere. I luv u ladies, with all my heart .

  • Ellen MR

    Boy, talk about little nudges!! Something told me to look at this devotion again and here I found your post – Thank you Kimberly Rae! I sooo needed to read this, and to know someone else in their 40’s is on the same path of learning God’s word! I long to know the actual people in all these stories, so I guess I’ll learn along with my kids! :)
    We’ll do it together, that way they won’t grow up lost like I was!!
    I’m so happy you found your way to the Lord too! Know that I’ll be praying for you, my new sister in Christ. That we both found our way and that we’re here to stay!! Blessings to you, and looking forward to the new SRT study with you and all the wonderful Ladies here! :)

  • Have so been blessed by this time with my sisters in the word! Would like to do the next study also.ins there one and how doni sign up?

  • Yvonne Rinehart

    Dear Melanie,
    Consider yourself prayed for, constantly. I have a daughter who serves Christ in missions in urban Philadelphia. She is praying for support and just sent out her letters to raise funds. I have another daughter who feels God calling her to Africa. I am so glad you posted this and for this community of faith. The Lord be with you.

  • Yvonne Rinehart

    Dear knitpurlgirl,
    I know your pain. Almost every word you wrote i could pen. God has put you before my eyes to be your sister and your son my covenant son and to pray as i do for my own son. My son is still prodigal.. He came to faith in Christ early and as a teen list sight of hope in Christ when h is best friend was killed in an accident that he too was in. That was 13 years ago. I was reading today’s passage and knew that he was going to be once again at the top of my list for people i want to come to or return to his faith in his Christ. And was greeting ready to post it as a prayer request, then i saw yours and am so grateful to partner with you in faith and know our prayers are heard and answered. Blessings on you and in this new year may his mercy be enough.

  • Ellen MR

    Praying for you Melanie, and that your mission accomplishes great victories for the Lord! I admire your willingness to do the Lord’s work, wherever that may take you. I also read your blog and the videos about bringing God’s Word to the people in Indonesia- how moving and beautiful! It even helped me, reinforcing God’s plan and his MERCY for ALL PEOPLE!! There is no distinction!! I love that… It also amazes me that there is STILL more than 6,000 peoples who have not heard of God’s Word!! I guess there’s a lot of work to do yet!
    Praying for your safety and your success!

  • Ellen MR

    As a newly saved believer, I’m having a hard time processing all these concepts and ideas!! I wasn’t brought up in a Christian home, so I really don’t know ANY bible stories or scripture- it’s a blank puzzle that very few pieces fit in the big picture. As a child I found pictures of Christ stirring my heart but had no idea why. When I was afraid, I’d instinctively grab the bible and hold on tight, terrified during the night! I had a brother who dabbled in darkness and I FELT awful things around me without knowing what or why, just that it was horrible. I prayed and prayed but didn’t know what for!
    Fast forward to 1992. My oldest daughter was born after a year of FINALLY being off drugs.Then in 1994 my Mom had one medical crises after another when early in 1995 she was diagnosed with terminal breast cancer. Her fear of dying without knowing Jesus began a quest for spiritual knowledge. (She had grown up in and even taught Sunday school in a Lutheran church, but that had been more or less a social structure back then- it was expected.)So after hearing time and again we needed to be saved, born again, and we’d feel a “movement” inside, we set out to do that! After praying with saved friends and going to various churches, each time we’d ask each other “Did you feel anything?” “No, I didn’t feel it either!?” It wasn’t until her colon ruptured 6 mos. after the cancer diagnosis that I felt that “movement”, (which I know now was the Holy Spirit,) at work as I prayed for her life as she lay dying septic from infection. It was a glorious sunrise as I repeated the 93rd and the 121st psalms during my prayer and that movement came!! And for one brief moment, it all made sense to me- finally! She pulled thru, and I was saved! For a little while.
    I didn’t nurture my new found spirituality. I didn’t want to be labeled a Jesus freak.. although when I did talk to some friends they believed these things too. But no one made the total commitment and no one spoke much about a personal relationship with Jesus. My Mom passed in 2003, not knowing if she was saved. She confessed and believed Jesus died for her, but didnt know if that was enough…it seemed something was missing. Her doubt and her death left me all alone, lost again…
    Now here I am, 10yrs later. But now I KNOW!! I GET it!! I FEEL the Holy Spirit in me, opening my heart and mind to allow Him in! To begin to understand His Word and how it applies to my life! An eternal life I would not have, if not for His MERCY!! I don’t know much and I can’t begin to quote scripture.Parables are sometimes confusing, and I seem to miss what’s obvious to others, but I do understand that God loves me (ME!!) and I’m soo grateful He gave His Only Son to forgive my sins! His love and mercy are never ending. I praise His name, forever Thankful for our precious, glorious Lord Jesus Christ!!

    • claire

      Praise God for his amazing work in you :)

    • Kimberly Rae

      oh girl…. reading your post just brings tears to my eyes….. in a good way… in a I am so excited and happy for you way….

      I had similar situations…always feeling some call, some guidance, some protection but had NO idea what it was…. godly women have always been placed in my life that gently guided me…. never pushed because that would have turned me in the opposite direction….

      I'm so grateful to Him for all those little nudges, and people…. and what a blessing the world wide web is that it can open my world to even MORE godly women…. I used to feel so inadequate, not growing up in a Christian home that becoming a Christian in my 40's felt scary…. little sunday school kids knew more than I did…. and that made me feel embarrassed…. but He gives us what we need when we need it….

      Thank you for sharing your precious story! I have been blessed by it today!

      Kimberly Rae

  • It has been my great pleasure to worship and share encouraging words with you ladies through out these 28 days. I have been touch so deeply by everyone’s words and prayers. I will take this experience with me and use it to further my walk with Christ. To have a support system like this community is what every Christian desires. Thank you all for just being a blessing to me. I am truly and humbly thankful. May God continue to bless you and let his presence consume you wherever you go so that you may continue to be a light for others.

  • knitpurlgirl

    Please pray for my eldest son who has taken up with an unbeliever, left our home and moved across the country with her. He knows the Truth but told me things I could not believe he was saying. Please pray for him to return to Christ!

  • I love this scripture in the bible because I am sometimes perplexed by Gods love for me. I understand that I am so imperfect, yet he loves me any. Why Lord, why me? And than he answers me in this scripture when he tells me you are saved by my goodness not from anything you have done, but because you serve a perfect God. So in the midst of it all if I just stay faithful, stay diligent and wait on Him, he’s got me! I have no doubt I will stumble at times but my God keeps me inspired because it is not by my works but by His and he is truly perfect. He also requires of me to tell people about his good works, to spread the good news to everyone. At first this was hard for because I am a reserved and sometimes quiet person in a lot of ways but I have found that the closer you get to God the more you want to shout praises unto Him and share his ways with others. I have already begun praying for people I want to be saved in the new year. It is not a chore for me, it is my pleasure. I do it willingly with hope that they too will be made new and can experience the ultimate blessing that is Jesus Christ. I know that when I was struggling to find him there was definitely someone out there praying for me. I understand that the true blessing comes when you are able to be a blessing. If I am able to save just one soul or touch just one life I’ll happily do it for the glory of God.

  • When I was 15, I memorized Titus 2:11-12 to help me overcome battles of temptation. I wish I would have memorized Titus 3:4-5 as well because I didn't really understand God's grace and mercy and therefore lived a pretty prideful, self-righteous life for about 8 years after that. Until God knocked me off my high horse and exposed my need for a Savior and the grace that He gives. I don't think memorizing Titus 2:11-12 was a bad thing to memorize because it gave me power and truth to overcome temptation..but I was never taught about the need everyone has for grace. Even though verse 11 says "For the grace of God which brings salvation.." I did't know what that really meant. Now at 24, and after going through depression, I think I'm beginning to see the tip of the iceberg of His rescuing grace and mercies. Praise GOD for saving a wretch like me of my pride and self-absorbed works that brought me to my fall! His grace drives me to share the GOOD NEWS to everyone. As a gift of God, my husband and I are youth leaders to a group of kids that were brought up with a similar mindset as me – brought up in a Christian family, home-schooled, haven't really done anything "really bad". I speak of all my failures and successes by His grace and prayerfully helping them to see why we are not saved by works, but by grace alone. I'm so thankful for His love, grace, and His power that comes by knowing and fearing Him. :-) Happy New Year sisters!

  • Hey everyone! Melanie, praying for you! so admirable to me that you are taking 2 years and dedicating to this service for God! rocknite56, I’m sorry I may have remembered your name wrong, praying for you. Been there, done that! I feel also that I am not a good example to others of Christlikeness. Everything I am reading today is about grace, about thanking Godyou His grace! One way I try to share is by posting comments on what I’ve read and that God has sharedwith each day on facebook. i sometimes don’t doit each day, but I try. most ofmy immediate family, Iam not sure they are saved. they go to church, but the church theygo to doesn’t teach salvation. I realized recently a way I can help help my mom. I discovered sheloves Christian fictionand asked me for an chi author I gotfor Christmas. Iam goingto send her a whole listof authors thatIknow write books that have the message of salvation in them. Coincidentallyou, she is also on my facebook.

  • Michaela

    I praise God for His grace and mercy, and pray for His Holy Spirit to take over my life completely! Less of me, more of Him!!

  • rocknitat55

    Melanie I have just prayed for u. God bless u my sister !

  • rocknitat55

    I love God because he never leaves me empty. For the last 2 days I have been crying out to God! I grew up in a household where I was always striving to be the best, perfect, look at me. I find myself extending grace and mercy to others whereas I allow myself none. I forgive others shortcommings and wrongdoings that I never extend to myself. I am soooooooo tired!
    Community I ask that you please pray for me. That I would be able to rest in God.
    I am a ministry leader and I find myself constantly striving, walking a fine line.
    People are always watching, we are to lead by example.
    But I do err. I do make mistakes. When this happens I beat myself up for days. Which I know is a sin.
    The last 2 lessons I feel have been Jesus speaking just to me.
    Thank u SRT for allowing God to speak through U. God Bless

  • I really thank God for this devotion site i stumbled across it searching on the web on my phone, at the beginning of the advent, and now i look forward reading it every day. I thank God for all these wonderful ladies who has found comfort and encouragement as i do in this daily devotion. Please let us pray for each other that God will give us the boldness and confidence to share the gospel with those that don,t know him as Lord and Savior. God bless all.

    • Leah

      Ingrid, like you..I stumbled on the blog a few months ago and I love it. I look forward to sharing my time with sisters near and far every morning…isn't that great? God bless!

  • Sweet sisters,

    Can I ask for your prayers today? I am leaving this evening for a two year term in Zambia with the International Mission Board. I will be serving the Lord among the Tonga people there. Pray that I will have the Father’s eyes and heart for these people, that I would see where He’s at work and join Him there, and that the hearts of the Tonga people would be ready to receive the gospel. And selfishly, I’d ask you to pray for a smooth and easy travel day today and tomorrow.

    I’ll still be reading the Word along with you from Zambia!


    • Ingrid

      May God guide and protect you my sister, and may you be encourage by these words from Matthew 5:14. You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill that cannot be hidden.

    • Makeda

      Melanie I have just prayed for you. I love your heart to join the Father where He is already at work and I believe He will open your eyes to see where He wants your story to intersect another's. Praying His peace to govern and guide you as you go. In His Name! Blessings to you!

    • Leah

      Melanie, you are in my prayers. I went to Zambia last summer, and it is a beautiful country with some of the most giving, joyful people you will ever meet. And is spare, desolate, and one of the most remote places I have ever been. Be safe, and love the journey you are on–even the 30 hour plane trip!
      Your blog is awesome too!

  • Lawsey00

    Thank you for sharing the last 28 days of fabulous words and blessings. It is great to know we are not alone in our daily life and each face struggles, challenges and weaknesses. I have known Gods presence in my life from I was young due to my upbringing but only declared myself a christian and publicly declared my faith by getting confirmed in June of this year, so I am still learning to sacrafice and lean on The Lord. This year has been fantastic for me as so many things have happened and this devotion has been a great way to finish the year. I look forward to the next devotion and spending the next year with a group of awesome women.
    Thank you Lord for all the directions in life that you give to me. I pray that you continue to open my ears to your word, my heart to your love and increase the Holy Spirit within me. Walk with me thru life and give me the strength to stay on the narrow road. I pray also for the lovely ladies who oversee this forum and site and ask that you continue to bless them daily and guide them as they work as disciples for you. Amen x

  • Wow I can't believe i am the first one who post a comment today. That's right we are undeserving but because of His grace and mercy, He gifted us an eternal life with Him in heaven. All we have to do is just to believe. I have lot of people to pray for. None of my immediate family members are saved. Not my mom/dad/sister or brothers. I will pray for their salvation, hoping that someday, they will find Christ like I did 18 years ago… Thank you for sharing this awesome scripture today, our last day of Advent.

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