1 Timothy 1:2 - "Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord."
-- These words from Paul's salutation to Timothy tell us a great deal about God's attitude toward us who trust Him for salvation. This salvation is based on the objective fact of Christ's death for our sins, His burial and resurrection from the dead. Grace refers to God's unmerited favour; his kindness to us. Mercy is grace applied to our sins and weaknesses. Peace flows from the preceding. It is not just an absence of outward conflict (Paul and Timothy both had to face hostility). It is a state of inner wholeness and joy of the Lord as our strength!
Originally published in the church bulletin Nov. 16, 2014.