Saturday, January 29, 2011

Got Grace?

I love the milk ads that display “Got Milk?” and show a person with milk on their mouth. You know they got milk because it’s there for everyone to see. So my question to you is, “Got Grace?”

This month I have been attending a parenting class at my church on Wednesday nights. It’s about Grace-Based Parenting and is basically about how parenting is much like we are “parented” by God. If we would just examine the way God deals with us, we would have a pretty surefire way to deal with our children.

The message of grace has just been really resonating inside of me. Grace. Think about that word. It really is a beautiful word. It encompasses everything that Jesus is and what our life is about, once we have come to know the Lord. We are saved by grace and we continue to live daily by grace.

But grace is not something we keep for ourselves. It is meant to be doled out, to be shared with others. As God fills us with grace it is our job to pour it out on others. But the problem is that our flesh often gets in the way.

While this class is definitely teaching me about the need to dispense grace upon my children, it is also speaking to me about the need to dispense it everywhere else.

I think of the times that I get frustrated. Like when I’m driving and someone in front of me isn’t going fast enough. I need to dispense grace. Or when I am in line at the grocery store and the person in front of me has to “quick” get out of line to get something else and I am left standing there for what feels like forever. I need to dispense grace.

Instead I get irritated and impatient. But that’s because I am thinking of only myself. Grace is not selfish at all. Grace is all about the other person. It’s giving to someone something they may not deserve but hey, how many times a day does God do the same for me?

Grace is forgiving the person who has wronged you. Grace is biting your tongue when you really want to let them have it. Grace is not making a big deal out of something that is really quite small. Grace is loving the unlovable. Grace is choosing to put your needs aside for the sake of someone else.

If you think about, everything about the “Christian life” is really based on grace. We often think of this verse when we hear the word grace: My grace is sufficient for you… (2 Corinthians 12:9). We use that verse to apply to our own lives. But I am reminded of 2 Corinthians 4:15 which says, “All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.”

He needs US to reach “more and more people” and we do that with grace. Why? So others can see the glory of God working in your life. Got grace?

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