“Because salvation is by grace through faith,
I believe that among the countless number of people
standing in front of the throne and in front of the Lamb,
dressed in white robes and holding palms in their hands
(see Revelation 7:9),
I shall see the prostitute from the Kit-Kat Ranch in
Carson City, Nevada, who tearfully told me
that she could find no other employment
to support her two-year-old son.
I shall see the woman who had an abortion
and is haunted by guilt and remorse but did
the best she could faced with grueling alternatives;
the businessman besieged with debt who
sold his integrity in a series of desperate transactions;
the insecure clergyman addicted to being liked,
who never challenged his people
from the pulpit and longed for unconditional love;
the sexually abused teen molested by his father
and now selling his body on the street,
who, as he falls asleep each night
after his last 'trick', whispers the name
of the unknown God he learned about in Sunday school.
'But how?' we ask.
Then the voice says,
'They have washed their robes and
have made them white in the blood of the Lamb.'
There they are. There *we* are -
the multitude who so wanted to be faithful,
who at times got defeated, soiled by life,
and bested by trials,
wearing the bloodied garments of life's tribulations,
but through it all clung to faith.
My friends, if this is not good news to you,
you have never understood the gospel of grace.”
- Brennan Manning