Grace – “dispostion to or an act or instance of kindness, courtesy, or clemency” (Merriam-Webster dictionary)
Grace is a gift of infinite worth – given away with no ulterior motives or expectations. Simply given – unearned and often undeserved. Having heard much about grace in recent months, I decided to go in search of it. Not in scripture or sermons – but in the world around me. I’m well aware of the magnificent, overwhelming grace God extends to us. His unmerited favor. I wanted to see if I could find the grace He calls us to give to one another – grace that sometimes goes against the grain of our human nature. We have a tendency, I think, to want the grace we give to be a bit more “merited.”
My husband and I walk in our local mall when the temperatures begin to climb over the ninety degree mark. We aren’t the only ones, and some of the other walkers have become familiar to us. I often noticed one particular lady. About my own age, she walked with purpose and set a fast pace. We began to wave across the mall and cheer one another on with an encouraging smile as we made our rounds.
I didn’t see her for quite a while, but I chalked it up to our erratic schedule. Then one day I spotted her walking with slow, halting steps beside an elderly man – matching her stride to his and holding his arm to give him support. I knew her walk was important to her. We had talked once about distance and speed – those things that matter when you’re doing something you enjoy and want to do well. Apparently she had sacrificed those things to walk beside a husband who couldn’t manage on his own. A beautiful picture of grace.
In so many situations we can choose to hold tightly to what we believe to be our rights 0r we can choose grace. The greatest Grace-Giver has shown us the way. He makes no demands – giving to us, who have done nothing to deserve or earn it, the gift of eternal life. In the giving, He frees us not to just receive but to give what we’ve been given. We are doubly blessed when we choose to give grace. We bless the one to whom it is given, and we ourselves are blessed.
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