Lent Devotions 2009: Saturday 21st March

“He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to His own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit”. Titus 3:5

In our daily lives we measure many things. When we get up we make our breakfast. If you decide on oatmeal you will measure the water so that the oatmeal is not too runny or too stiff. Whatever you eat, you measure the amount of food you will consume. You might look at the outdoor thermometer to measure the temperature so you will know what to wear or take along. As you drive away, a quick glance at the car’s speedometer will tell you if you are going too fast or too slow. For those of us who run, we measure time versus distance. As the day progresses all of us continuously measure item after item.

Spirituality is measured differently. Spirituality is not measured by external standards of anything good we did or evil we avoided. Our eternal salvation is only “because of God’s mercy.” God forgives our sins and presents us the gift of salvation “Not because of righteous things we did” but as a gift. Our self-righteous works do not save us. God provides means to save us. One of these is the Sacrament of Holy Baptism. Martin Luther called Baptism a “holy bath of regeneration.” Through this Sacrament the Holy Spirit dwells in us plus we receive forgiveness of sin. God’s mercy in Jesus, His Son, cleanses us from all sin, which would separate us in eternal death from Him.

We praise You, Lord, for Your Sacraments, and particularly the forgiveness of our sins in Holy Baptism. May we remember our baptisms every day with gratitude . Amen.