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Southside is a loving, vigorous, and growing congregation in Shelbyville, Tennessee. Our vision is toward the future: Our Children, Our Ministry, and Our Outreach. Our goal is to embrace all people in our hearts and fellowship as we strive together to support Christ’s mission on earth.
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How Far Does God’s Grace Extend?

My favorite class in high school was civics. Each day the teacher had discussions centered around current events and what they meant in our lives He would not allow discussion of religion but there was a general respect for belief in God. It may be because of age but it does not seem the country was as divided way back then as we are today. Now, it feels as though a confession of faith in God means you are evil. Current events carry too much frustration for me these days!

A current event is Brittany Griner. Brittany is a 31-year-old women’s professional basketball player. She and her wife have exhibited many frustrations with the United States. Brittany has shown her frustration by refusing to stand for our National Anthem, then refusing to leave the locker room as it was played to finally demanding that it not be played at all.

Brittany grew frustrated with her compensation, $227,000 per year, in the US and started play in Russia for about $1,500,000 annually. Her net worth is estimated at five million dollars. Not too bad! Recently, she was caught bringing cannabis vape cartridges in her luggage into Russia. She was arrested and subsequently pleaded guilty to possession of an illegal substance. She says she did not mean to break the law and now her attorney  claims she has a medical prescription. Unfortunately for her, Russia has no medical prescription allowance. She faces up to ten years in a Russian prison. Brittany and her wife have been super critical of what they see as the US’s lack of efforts to bring her home.

Some media has written that the US is at fault for her going to Russia. Women do not receive equal pay with men basketball professionals so Brittany was forced to go to Russia. That seems to be the way in today’s society; “it’s someone else’s fault!”. Other media has claimed that she “made her bed” so lie in it. Reading the comments on social media people are pretty well split on what they believe.

Many people on Facebook are of the opinion that she hates the US so let her spend ten years in a Russian jail then let’s see how she likes the US. She has after all totally disrespected America, refused to take responsibility for her own actions and lives an un-Godly life style. She needs to get her comeuppance! To be completely honest that’s been my feeling until some recent Bible study.

John 15:12: “This is my commandment, that ye love one another, even as I have loved you.” John 15:17: “These things I command you, that ye may love one another.” Is my attitude love? No! I believe she needs to pay for breaking the law in Russia. I strongly detest her attitude towards America however I still need to have Godly love for her. There are many other people that I have the exact same attitude about so I need to have Godly love for them as well! It’s difficult but all the things that I detest about her does not justify not having Godly love for her. I also need to be careful that my feelings don’t extend to her comeuppance relative to where she spends eternity.

Now maybe the biggest question is: “Does God’s grace extend to Brittany?” Most of us are pretty sure that God’s grace extends to us, our family and friends but are not sure it extends far enough to cover people like Brittany.

John 15:12 and 17, do not say except love everyone except the following. In fact Luke 6:27-28 “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.”  Probably need to inventory our lives so we have true Godly love. Maybe we need an attitude adjustment to feel more comfortable about God’s grace for others.


Mike   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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