Playing with House Money
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. (2 Corinthians 9:8 ESV)
When a gambler is up and in the black, it is said that they are 'playing with house money.' By playing with the money they have won, their capital remains safe and they are using the house - the casino - to risk and bet.
Maybe I'm not supposed to use gambling metaphors on a Christian blog, but this one fits. Sue me. (But remember believers aren't supposed to sue other believers - what's up now?).
If our faith is in Christ, God has already made all grace abound to us. Not that we have received all of the grace that there is, but we have already received all of the grace we could hope for. Forgiveness, adoption, purchase, reconciliation, freedom, intimacy. Each day God lavishes more grace upon us. It's like drinking from a fire hydrant of grace.
So we have sufficiency in all things, our bellies full of the grace of Christ. We hunger no more.
Take a look at the verse above again. God is able to make all grace abound...so that having...you may abound in every good work. Shortened, God gives grace so we have it all so we can do work.
I am not allowed to go in Costco. Hungry or not, I will buy everything in sight. Steak, wine, shirts, books, and surely a kayak. (Maybe I could take the kayak for a paddle, eat a steak, wear my new shirt, drink a glass of wine, and then read a book.) Don't judge - I know you have been to the grocery store hungry and you know what it feels like. Every aisle looks more appealing when you're starving. I'll take that...and that...and. But when you're full, your head is clear and you are able to actually get what you came for.
God gets us. Probably because He made us. In His image.
He knows we are immature and when we lack, we are crazy. And it isn't good to hire crazy people to steward the world. So God gives us everything in Himself - in the person and work of Jesus. Standing under the waterfall of grace drenches us in peace and - dare I say this word that we all blast in Christian circles - comfort. Not gluttonous comfort, but comfort that rests our souls for work.
The point of this verse lies at the end. Work. Action. God is good to us so we can go abound in every good work, the work itself another gift of God's goodness. (Ever heard of a circular argument? This is circular giving.) To abound means we can do tons of good work with the strength and freedom He already provided in our salvation in Christ.
When we play with house money, we abound in every good work.
Photo credit: Florencia&Pe via Flickr