For God works in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.
What kind of power and promise does God give us? In the previous verse, we can read that Paul encourages us to “work hard to show the results of our salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and great fear.” The willingness and power to work, which are the primary installments of His grace, encourage us to fully demonstrate and carry through to complete the “salvation” He first “worked” and is still “working” in us, allowing us to “work it out.” Man’s power to will and to do what he wants should not leave us perplexed. This power comes from God, but it is the human being who uses it. He who does not use this power to accomplish his salvation, will be held responsible. All men possess this power but not all of them use it.
I like very much this quotation of Saint Bernard: “Our will does nothing without grace; but grace is inactive without our will”. Man is, in different ways, entirely active, and entirely passive: God produces everything, and we are all actors. What He has produced are our own acts. It is not that God does one part and we do the rest. God does everything, and we do everything. God is the only proper author; we are the only proper actors. Thus, the same things mentioned in Scripture are represented as coming from God, and from us. God makes a new heart, and we are commanded to make a new heart for ourselves; not only because we must use the means for the effect, but the effect itself is our act and duty.
Even though there is our part to play and God’s part to play, I want to encourage you to give up the “I must do” to receive the will and power of God. It is by God’s grace that we have access to His promise. While you may be feeling weak or have failed to please God, or clearly lack the will and power, this is a new day to allow God to be God. He loves you so much that He is providing right now by releasing His will and power upon you to please Him. Not by might, nor by power, but by the Holy Spirit His presence wants to fill you with these two supernatural ingredients coming from Heaven: His will and His power. These are gifts for you. Therefore, receive them freely right now.
Prayer: God, I want to please you. Only through your Grace have I access to your precious gifts that will help me to work on my salvation. By faith, I allow the Holy Spirit to work deeply inside of me to release Your will and Your power to develop my salvation. I’m grateful to Jesus, who paid the price by dying on the cross and rose again to save me. And I want to keep it and to develop it with Your will and Your power.
Quote: His will and His power are God’s gift to work out our salvation
Song: Hillsong – The Power Of Your Love (with lyrics)