Frank Lake, together with Swiss theologian Dr. Emil Brunner, devised the dynamic cycle of grace based on the life of Christ.

The world view to being accepted is the reverse of the Biblical view…

The Cycle of Grace (Wrong)

From the world’s point of view, you need to start by achieving, which gives you a sense of significance, which then in turn, sustains you and finally, if you succeed through all your own efforts, you might have a chance to feel accepted.

This is a false sense of security because life is not without struggles, and this sets you up for guaranteed failure at some point or points in your life. This type of life is unsustainable and difficult.

The Biblical view is the way of Grace and Mercy…

The Cycle of Grace (Correct)

Acceptance’ is where the Biblical cycle of grace starts. This is the way into the cycle. About Christ’s acceptance Matthew’s gospel says: “And a voice from heaven said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” (Mt 3; 17 NLT) Because of Jesus’ finished work on the Cross, God was pleased with us… God is the One who knitted us together in our mother’s womb (Psalm 139:15 NLT). Even if we were rejected by our parents, God chose us and adopted us as His very own children (Psalm 27:10 NLT) and it cost Him everything (Jn 3:16 NIV). It provides us with the sense of ‘being’, of belonging.

The ‘Sustenance’ stage can be compared to maintaining the input, this is where we are dependent on the continual input from an outside source, Jesus was continuously sustained through the Father and the Holy Spirit (Jn 3:34 NLT, Jn 5:20 NLT, Jn 10:30 NLT). This is the root of ‘well-being’, where needs are met to provide physical, mental and spiritual stability, the core of the individual. God is our Preserver, our Protector (Psalm 121:5 NLT) and our Provider (Psalm 54:4 NIV)

The third stage is the ‘Significance’ where we can find our identity, our value and our worth in Christ. In John’s gospel Jesus boldly says “I am the way, the truth, and the life … (Jn 14:6 NIV). This is the stage where He knew who He was. This is the stage where we become aware of who we are in Christ. We are just as special as Jesus even if we don’t feel it because in God’s eyes, He paid for us by the death and crucifixion of His Only Son. He would have done it for you even if you had been the only person on the face of this earth.

The final stage is ‘Achievement’ where the awareness of the previous stage gets into action. Jesus went into ministry for 3 years. This is the stage where we can start to serve God, because we are in such intimate relationship with Him. We know that we are cherished by The Lord, we know that He knows our needs even before we ask, we know He is our strength and He is with us everywhere we go. We want to give back to Him as much as we can… It is out of our God given abundance from God that we want to give back to Him.

We are still limited human beings, but the power and glory are not ours but God’s… And we need to remember that as humans, whatever we give to God out of our identity in Christ, we can never out give God…

… And if we fail, if we feel rejected or abandoned, we can go back to Jesus, our first love and re-charge our batteries…

28 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30 NIV)