Every year as we prepare for Christmas, I am struck by the fact that Christ's gift of grace just keeps on giving. He did not just give us grace once, but grace that continues and carries us through year after year. He did not just give mercy for our sins but lavished on us grace we did not deserve.
Max Lucado says it well, "The difference between mercy and grace is that mercy gave the prodigal son a second chance. Grace gave him a feast."
As you think about this past year, how did your life intersect with God's grace? And how did you give that grace away to others?
The gift of grace is new every morning as we seek God's face. The gift of grace depends on God's goodness, not ours. And the gift of grace never ends.
Below is a special recipe from Cathy and a reflection on our biggest change at SAGrp this year. As you prepare to enter a new year, our prayer for you in this coming year is that you will embrace God's grace and extend it to others.
This year we were grateful to move to a new location. Our new office in Clermont puts us closer to home for most of our staff and gives us more needed office and conference room space for our growing team. We also have a unique seminar/workshop room that is like a large home theater so we can host educational and relational events. We look forward to giving you a tour the next time you visit our office!
MOM'S SPECIAL SUGAR COOKIES
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp milk
Sift dry ingredients together. Cream shortening and sugar, and add dry ingredients and milk. Roll and cut. Sprinkle with sugar and bake at 375° for 12 minutes.
Recipe from Cathy Rogers
When I was growing up and my mom would make cookies, quite often it was her sugar cookies. She had all shapes and sizes of cookie cutters that she used depending on the season or reason she was making them and then she would decorate them. When my dad would see that my mom was making cookies, he would always ask “are these for here or are you taking them….?” He was always hoping that he would at least get to sample them. Whether mom was making them to take to church or for one of us kids to bring to school or if they were for us to enjoy at home, she would make a couple of “special cookies” just for him.
My dad loved peanut butter, so as a special treat for him she would usually make a couple with peanut butter in the middle of them for him. She usually just made those “special cookies” for dad, but on occasion my siblings and I would be the benefactor of those special cookies, which was a wonderful treat! Even today, when I see sugar cookies, I think of mom. She and my dad are both in heaven now, so I am thankful for these memories.
"For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast”.
—Ephesians 2:8–9, ESV.