Week Seven: A 3-2-1 Example
3 key ideas from this week’s reading.
There is a definite link between justification and sanctification. Grunewald expresses it this way, “Justification always effects our sanctification. In other words, the grace that saves us also changes us” (Grunewald, p. 105). This connection is rooted in Jesus Christ who is at work within us re-creating us to be people who love the people around us.
The gifts and opportunities God gives us are so that we can serve the people around us. They are not because “He” needs something. We are given them because “they” needs something. Grunewald writes, “Our neighbors need our good works. Jesus doesn’t need our love and service by our neighbors do. Jesus doesn’t need our food in order to survive, but our neighbors might. Jesus doesn’t need us to protects Him and care for Him but our children do need care and protection” (Grunewald, p. 110). Thus, we are blessed to be a blessing. We have received good things so that we can share those good things with our neighbors.
The transformation in the believer is being orchestrated by Jesus and it turns our curved inward bend to an outward bend. In other words, we are being reshaped so that instead of an inward gaze at our own life we have an outward look to the needs of our neighbor. Grunewald notes, “Jesus turns our inward curves out toward our neighbors. When selfishness has made us worship only what pleases us, Jesus is at work in us making us forget ourselves. Jesus gives us new sight as we see our neighbors the way He sees our neighbors” (Grunewald, p. 124). One practical outgrowth of sanctification is that we begin to see the needs of others and the way in which God has gifted us to meet those needs.
2 things you learned from this week’s reading.
Concupiscence: This theological word is not something we hear used frequently today. However, its definition is one that describes the human condition. To that end, “Concupiscence is the desire and the lusting of the heart towards sin” (Grunewald, p. 25)
Luther’s interpretation of Deuteronomy 6:6: This is an understanding of this passage that I was not aware of nor had been previously exposed to. Luther sees the terms in this verse as more practical rather than religious. To that end, “‘between your eyes’ means all our thoughts must be directed by these words, and the phases to write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates’ means that all our senses and particularly our tongue must be directed and applied according to these words” (Grunewald, p. 112).
1 way you can use what you have read this week.
Grunewald talks about hiding in chapter 1. More specifically, he talks about the way we have learned to hide things as it relates to social media. He writes, “We’ve become experts at hiding. We filter our lives and crop out the sadness so that everybody sees a version of us that has everything together…This is the unwritten law of social media: show the best version of your life and hide the mess (Grunewald, p.12). With this in mind, I will focus on personal contentment rather than personal dissatisfaction as I consume information on social media. I will remind myself that what I am looking at is a highlight reel with all of the sadness cropped out.