Words by David Byrd | Image by Blakeney Clouse
It’s probably not often that someone of my age, 64, sees something or experiences something for the first time. But on March 1 of this year, I experienced something so wonderful it is beyond words.
On that Wednesday morning, I became a grandfather for the first time! Little Merritt Grace Burroughs came into this world at 7:21 a.m. to forever change our hearts and lives.
It has been over three decades since I have loved a baby this much. Sure, I’ve been to the hospital for births of many church members’ children and grandchildren. This one, however, was different because she was my grandchild.
She is so beautiful and so sweet. To the adoring eyes of four first-time grandparents, she appears to be the epitome of total innocence.
When I catch myself sitting and staring at her, it is hard for me to fathom that this precious child has within her a sin nature. Right now, she seems to be so perfect inside and out. Yet within her there is a sin nature she will act on, and one day she will sin for the very first time.
No doubt, it will be the first of many times she will choose to be disobedient. It has been this way since Adam and Eve ate us out of house and home in the Garden of Eden when they made the decision to disobey God. That’s precisely where sin itself was born and entered the human race. God’s Word tells us in Isaiah 53:6 that, except for one man, “All of us like sheep have gone astray.”
A little over two thousand years ago, another baby was born, this time to Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem. This baby didn’t just look perfect; He was perfect because He was conceived with the aid of the Holy Spirit of God. This baby was not only the Son of God; He was God. But He was also fully man.
Jesus was tempted to sin just like we are, and He could have sinned had He chosen to do so. He made the choice to live His life perfectly doing the will of God so He might become the Lamb of God who would one day go to the cross and bear the penalty for your sin and mine. He was and still is God’s only remedy for the sin problem that plagues every man, woman, boy, and girl.
Because He was perfect, His blood was not tainted, and He became the sacrifice for our sin when He died on the cross. If we will trust in His shed blood as the payment for our own personal sin, we can one day stand in perfection before God. That’s grace and yes, it is amazing!
The ironic thing about my granddaughter’s name, Merritt Grace, is that we don’t merit grace. We are totally undeserving of what Jesus did for us on the cross. That’s how much God loves us. As much as all of us in the family love Merritt, God loves her far more.
Let me urge you to come to Christ and trust Him for your salvation. You will be amazed to see all the wonderful things He wants to do in your life. WL