he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. (Tt 3:5–7; NIV)
Can you imagine this? We are the ones who should be calling out to God and making the first step toward reconciliation. Yet, it was God who did nothing wrong that took not only the first step but many steps towards us for reconciliation. God actually went the entire distance and met us where we were at the time. That's called love. When he has every right to sit back and say, "You hurt me, so you need to come to me and beg my forgiveness." At least this is what many of us would say or think, but our God is not petty. He understands the human heart and knows it is hard for us to "go" and ask someone's forgiveness, and many of us never would have in our sinful state. So, he meets us face to face. He has taken all the steps and is even reaching out his hand to us saying, "Come back home. I love and miss you."
Have you ever noticed children that have gotten into trouble at home? They will do everything they possibly can around the house to show how worthy they are of forgiveness, at times making a mess just so they have something to clean up. A parent loves their child so much that all their wonderful deeds don't make a difference. The forgiveness is already there, as soon as the act was found. All they had to do was say they were sorry.
God says he does not want us to run around doing righteous things, because that, in itself self does not save us. It is his mercy, freely given that does, and the righteous acts that come about are because we want to do them. He pours out his mercy in the form of the Holy Spirit through his Son, Jesus Christ, so that we might be heirs to the Kingdom of God and having hope and confidence in life eternal.
What a loving, caring, merciful Father, we have! Who is willing to come to us, ready to take all the steps and meet us face to face.