Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Give More Grace

As I sit here in my office writing this and looking out my window, I’m captivated by the beautiful, big, pristine snowflakes falling down. I can’t help but see the symbolism of grace as I watch the peaceful stream of flakes swirl around and ever so gently fall to the ground.
What is grace? I decided to search for an actual definition and this is one I found, “Grace is God’s unmerited favor.  It is kindness from God we don’t deserve.  There is nothing we have done, nor can ever do to earn this favor.  It is a gift from God.  Grace is divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification; a virtue coming from God; a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine favor.”  I also found this:

I love that!

Sitting here watching the snow fall, I feel like I’m in the middle of a snow globe, shaken by a small child, where the snow just swirls and swirls and very gently comes down.  And the more the globe is shaken, the more off balance it gets, and the heavier the snow falls.  And this is how I see God’s grace.  The more we mess up, the more chaotic our lives get, the more God’s grace is ever present.  We cannot earn God’s grace.  It is freely given.  It’s not an award we are handed for our good works, for making good choices.  It’s a gift.  A FREE gift for those who truly believe in Him.  It is always there waiting for us to accept, my friends.

God also calls us to give ourselves and each other grace.  This isn’t always easy.  But we are called to give grace when others fail to meet our expectations.  When others offend and hurt us but their words or actions, we are called to extend grace to them.  When our friends get so busy in their own lives and don’t reach out to us, they still deserve grace.  When we fail to get everything done on our to-do list or when we are quick to lose patience with our children, we are called to give ourselves grace.  We are called to give our children and our husbands grace as well.  We are all learning in this adventure called life and we all need grace.  As I mentioned before, grace is a kindness we do not deserve.  But we are called to give it just like Christ gives it ever so freely to us.  Grace doesn’t come with strings attached.

I recently experienced the true meaning of giving and receiving grace and I have to tell you, grace also comes with a peace that passes all understanding.  Yes, giving grace may require us to swallow our pride and show humility.  It may require us to step out of our comfort zone and ‘be the bigger person’, but the end result is beyond worth it.  I can honestly tell you that from personal experience.  God has a way of growing us through grace if we allow Him to.

As a mom of young children, it’s not always easy to give myself grace.  Maybe you feel the same way.  We set unrealistic expectations of ourselves.  Sometimes we look at other moms and we think we should be doing what they do or accomplishing all that they are.  When we do this, we set ourselves up for unnecessary failure.  We are all on a journey.  But this journey involves a path very uniquely created for each of us.  No two paths are alike.  We must embrace the path God has placed each of us on and give grace daily.  While we are here on this earth traveling on this journey, we will all triumph and we will all fail.  But with God’s grace, we get back up and continue on our journey, learning all the while. 

My friends, I encourage you to give grace.  If you have fallen, give yourself grace.  If someone else has fallen on their journey, give them grace.  Grace helps us all to get back up and carry on toward our end goal, which is God’s will for us all.

God Bless.