Archive for May, 2012

What is this concept of grace anyway? I have heard that word all my life but what does it really mean? Or maybe I should say, what should it mean to me? I can remember saying “grace” before each meal or hearing my mother telling me to be gracious when someone did something nice for me. I always gave, and still do give gratuity when someones service pleases me like a waiter at a restaurant. Credit card companies will extend “grace periods” to their customers and the list goes on. The acclaimed author Philip Yancey calls the word grace, “the last best word”, because he believes that grace is “still one grand theological word that has not been spoiled”…by a society that tends to weaken the meaning of words. I agree with Yancey because when you hear the word “grace” even now, the core of its meaning hasn’t been spoiled or diluted. In other words, the true meaning is still intact. Grace shouts “I know you’re in trouble and I’m going to help you” something this world needs to hear desperately. Yancey goes on to ask the question, “where can the world go to find grace?” and that is the cornerstone of this post because I believe that this starvation for grace exists inside every one of us but yet satisfying that hunger without Christ, is impossible.

Grace is a very simple word and simple in meaning. I looked it up in the dictionary and it said, “unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification”…which means, something God gives to us that is completely undeserved. But you can also experience grace at the hands of a friend or even a stranger simply showing love or acceptance. Have you ever experienced an undeserved gift or maybe accepted by strangers you did not know? Maybe the grace gift that was provided gave you much-needed relief yet was completely unexpected…coming from nowhere….that is grace at the core…

I have been struck by this word grace recently and what it means because of so much ungrace or the opposite of grace that I see around me. As I mentioned before, the world is starving for grace and is there anyone left to provide it? Christ provided the greatest example of grace for all of us but yet at the same time, showing grace does not come naturally. Face it, we tend to be selfish because selfishness is the example we see everyday.

So what are we to do with this information I am sharing with you? How does one go from ungrace to grace? I can tell you from my own personal experience that it starts with forgiveness…something also very difficult. When you can truly forgive a friend or family member that has wronged you in some way, you are extending grace to that person. Obviously, that means some work on your part (and mine) with God because we tend to keep score on wrongs committed against us…If we think we have been wronged, the other person needs to make the first move…right?. WRONG…Grace means you take the first step by forgiving and then where the relationship goes from that point? Grace is acceptance, Grace is, I am there for you no matter what…

Let me put it to you another way. Do you realize that the road to heaven is absolutely…IMPOSSIBLE…without the grace extended to us by Jesus Christ? You, me nor any other famous person ever to live, can get to heaven without it.

One more time…we cannot get to heaven on our own despite what the world says…

God invented salvation and the grace we need to get to heaven so that he could have a relationship with you and me. He wants you to rely on Him…not on you…you need His grace to make it through the day and ultimately, on to heaven itself. But it does start with a daily dose of grace you receive but more importantly…given away to someone else.

Remember the words of Christ in Matthew 6:14:

For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.

Grace freely given and grace freely received…

Where can the world go to find grace?


Look in the mirror because it starts with you and me…

Until next time guys…