Growing Up in GraceFriday, August 05, 2016
In our human terminology, grace can take on different definitions mostly meaning "a favor" like a creditor extending you extra time to pay a bill.
Grace is More than Elegance
The dictionary also defines grace as simple elegance or refinement of movement. For us Christians, grace takes on such a deeper meaning and experience. It's like I am trying to carry a sack of laundry that's way too heavy for me and all of a sudden a body builder comes along and easily offered to carry the sack for me. I no longer have to struggle carrying something too much for me, sweating, crying, and eventually tiring out that I can no longer handle the weight.
I am Carrying too Much Weight
I am that person trying to carry a huge sack of weight on my back full of illness, envy, sadness, depression, anger, lying, bad thoughts, nightmares, fear and terror, uncertainty, bad decisions, self-destructiveness, selfishness, stinginess, and just a whole lot else that sin entraps and overtakes us with. Jesus is that body builder that comes along with the ability to carry these sins, but He doesn't stop there. He goes further than any man because He has the power to forgive me of my sins, take my place to pay the penance, and He gives me His power and strength so that I don't have to carry these weights anymore.
His grace saves me from myself. It also sustains me everyday as I deal with stuff all the time. It is His grace that has the power to help me anytime and every time I need Him. And I find that as each day comes and goes, I need Jesus even more. How do you thank someone for doing something so incredible for you that you know you couldn't do for yourself?
Why Would The Lord Jesus Choose to Die for Me?
I am such a feeble, frail human being and I just sometimes can't fathom this Holy God in Heaven wanting a relationship with me. I can't imagine the love He has for me, there are times when I feel unloved by everyone, I feel all alone. But, then I look at the cross and I know I am loved and I'm not alone. One day, I will see His face and know The One who wipes all my tears, strengthens me when I'm weak, and gives me courage when I'm afraid.
His grace helps me to stay content when I'm in a battle. My problems overwhelm me and I feel like giving up, but it's His grace that helps me hang on. I can't explain it, all I know is He has seen me through so much in my life. I know He exists, I could not have a life worth living if not for Jesus.
I did some reading on grace and I've studied a lot of scriptures on the subject, I could have written this article very differently, but as I prayed for how to explain grace, I felt compelled to share what it means to me. In essence, that's the purpose of this blog...to share with God's grace means to me.
Grace is Hard to Understand
We like to be in control. We like to do it ourselves. We take credit for our accomplishments and take pride in our victories. The idea of accepting something we didn't have to work for is difficult. Sin has such a hold on us that if we're not careful we can believe that we don't need a savior. Nothing could be further from the truth. If you live long enough, at some point something will hit you to knock you down. Money can't fix everything, having the best this or that can leave you empty.
I tried so many things in life to find happiness: drugs, relationships, partying, heavy metal music, none of which gave me any joy. The things I accumulated in the way of success are fleeting, temporary. They offer no hope and no answers. And only until I gave my life to Jesus did I find the true meaning of living. We were created to have relationship with God and whether we realize it not, our souls will never be satisfied until we unite with Jesus.
God's Grace to me extends from this life to the next. It's a gift given to me I didn't earn or deserve. He did because of His great love for us. I admit I don't understand why He loves me so much, but I'm more than happy that He loves me. My desire is that I can come to fully receive His grace and know how deeply He loves me.