It is God’s grace.
God is not where you think He would be. Nor does He do what you think He ought to do or not do. God is in places you have never and would never dream to go in. His grace is found in prisons of failure not the palaces of achievement. It refuses to break the bruised reed that everyone wants to break or snuff out the smouldering wick that everyone sees as useless.
I LOVE YOU. NOW. AS THINGS ARE. NO MATTER HOW BAD.
It is God’s gift.
Paul says he received this gift. He was saying, “It shaped my life, my thinking of life. It has shaped the way I have taught and how I have written. The day I received this grace changed me forever.”
It is God’s purpose
“This grace is not just for me but for others.” v2 for you; v8 to preach; v9 to make plain.
Paul is a steward of grace. As God gives grace to Paul then he must give grace to others. If you really want to gauge your love for God then look at your love for people.
Jesus did not spend time with the sinners who may have skipped their Bible reading that morning. But he spent time with people society called sinners. When we get to heaven we will be standing with countless people dressed in white robes. Who will these people be? Will it be those who have ticked all the right boxes of Christianity? No. It will people who needed to rely on the grace of God.