December 16
Moving off the Sandbank
Galatians 5
"You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth?" (v. 7)


As you read the words of our text today, do you not sense the disappointment the apostle Paul felt over some of the Galatians? "You were running a good race." You were! Ah, there's the problem. They started well but they had been sidetracked. Might the Savior say as much to you and me? We were keen once. We were responding to grace. It came in like the waves of the sea -- grace succeeding grace -- and we allowed ourselves to be carried along by it. Then the time came when God led us to some new task or act of surrender, and we sheered away. When we refused the task we refused also the grace. That's when we ran on to the sandbank.
People who started after us have swept past us, not because they are specially favored but because they use all the grace God provides. It's no good putting our lack of keenness down to age or impediments. Before you go to sleep tonight, get alone and be quiet with God. Review your life in God's light. Ask yourself: Where did I fall out of the race? Invite God to show you the place where you drew back. When He does, repent of your unwillingness to use His grace (there will be grace available for you to face up to this) and tell Him you want to be back in the race again, pacing forward spiritually, along with the most ardent souls you know. It will delight God and make the angels sing. "Look," they will say, "he (or she) is moving again. And with speed. Hallelujah!"
O God, may this day be a turning point in my spiritual progress. Help me take this truth to heart that when I refuse Your challenge I refuse the grace that goes along with it. Today I move off the sandbank. By grace. Amen.
For Further Study
1. What was Paul able to say?
2. What were Paul's words to Timothy?