A Sign of Grace
Grace is a word that cuts both ways. On one hand - it's beautiful: it means God's unmerited, unearned love and favour. It's like a smile from heaven that we don't deserve. God give us abundant kindness and mercy and love, and it's great. But the thing with grace is that we do not deserve it; we cannot earn it. And that's the difficult bit, because we are hard-wired to believe that we should get what we deserve.
Every time we see a rainbow - the sign of the covenant God made with Noah that he would never again destroy the earth with water - it's a reminder of God's grace. Our temptation is to give in to the subtle suggestion that the rainbow should be there because we somehow deserve it. But we don't. The first step towards progress with God is the humble admission that we don't deserve grace. The other half of that first step is appreciating that God has given grace.
That's the good news, and that's what Jesus does. The rainbow is a reminder that in Christ God has given us what we don't deserve. He lived a perfect life - the life we should have lived. He for the penalty for our sin by dying a death in our place - the death we should have died. And he triumphed over the power of darkness in his resurrection.
Jesus is the one who takes us safely through God's righteous judgment against sin. We don't deserve it, but God does it any way. That's grace.
See you soon!