The Grace Card

Southaven, Ms

By: Mike Upchurch

Beth and I recently got back from a week long whirlwind trip covering eight states and around 1,700 miles. It was a working vacation, as not only do I serve as a Racers For Christ®️ Chaplain, but I was announcing at several racetracks during the week.  We stayed in many different hotels which ran the gamut in service, amenities and appearance. But every room had a common denominator. I had to have a plastic card with a magnetic stripe to enter each room.  And even to enter the side doors to the Lobby after hours in some cases.   We had to have an activated “key card” for each room or we would have been forced to sleep in the truck. 

Pastor Mike and Beth…

For the purpose of illustrating today’s column, let’s say you’re traveling out of town and have booked the cheapest motel room you can find. No amenities are included and they don’t even offer breakfast.  But then you’re sent an email informing you that you’ve been upgraded to a room in an exclusive 5 star Hotel instead. You further read that within the luxury suite are baskets of fresh fruit awaiting you.  There are beautiful art classics adorning the walls, the room will have a breathtaking view, and it will feature a fully stocked gourmet kitchen. The suite also has a hot tub on a private balcony, and the Hotel offers free laundry service.  A masseur is available, and every possible whim of yours will be met during your stay. All at no cost to you!

You’re really excited about the upcoming stay and you simply can’t wait to experience all that is promised!

But when you check in and take the elevator to your room, you find the key card they gave you at the registration desk won’t open the door. No green light, no unlocking of the door, and no access to your luxury suite. A trip back to the desk is to no avail as they’ve placed a sign at the desk saying No Rooms Available and the Concierge is gone for the day.   You’re kept out of the most wonderful evening you were about to spend simply because your key card wouldn’t unlock what awaited you, as it was never activated.

Well, to draw a parallel, Heaven similarly awaits us all with the wonder it promises. And everyone has been offered a “key card” to access it.  That key card is grace!  Grace for each one of us!  And it was purchased with Jesus Christ’s death on the cross. God said that all who receive His Son as Savior are allowed into heaven (John 3:16). All because of grace!

Grace wipes away our sins and removes the stains. Grace makes us righteous through Jesus in God’s eyes!Grace is getting what we don’t deserve. Grace unlocks the door to God’s overwhelming love. Grace paves the way to eternal life!  It’s grace that allows you to enter the abundant life Jesus promises…..

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”‭‭John 10:10‬

But you must activate your grace card in order to enter what’s been promised. You must activate your grace card in order to receive eternal life.   You do so by accepting Christ as your personal Savior! Then the grace card will unlock the doors to all that the Kingdom offers!   Healing, peace, and joy will be yours in abundance with your grace card activated!

However, try to access Heaven without that card and you’ll find you’re prevented from ever entering. The only way into Heaven is through Christ and His grace!  And the only way to get that card is to register in advance with Jesus the Christ. He is the one who dispenses grace.  He is the only one handing out the grace card. 

“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”‭‭John 14:6

You need the grace card!  Sign up today!  The rules are really quite simple…..

“If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved. As the Scriptures tell us, “Anyone who trusts in Him will never be disgraced.”For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”‭‭Romans‬ ‭10:9-11, 13‬ ‭NLT‬

Remember, it is not your trying to live “good” that saves you!  It is GRACE!

“God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.”‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭2:8‬ ‭NLT‬

Again, you will be locked out of all the beauty and wonder of Heaven without the grace card which has been offered you!  And worse, you’ll be denied fellowship with the Father for all eternity and instead will be in torment! Don’t delay in accepting God’s grace offered through Jesus!  The grace card will continually work for you once you have received it!  You’ll never be denied God’s goodness once you possess His grace!

And that’s the way I see it!

Pastor Mike