"And of His fullness have all we received, and grace for grace." (John 1:16)
"Grace is love that cares, and stoops and rescues." (John Stott)
"One who has been touched by grace will no longer look on those people who stray as 'those evil people' or 'those poor people who need our help.' Nor must we search for signs of 'loveworthiness.' Grace teaches us that God loves because of who God is, not because of who we are." (Philip Yancey)
Grace is receiving what we don't deserve; it's being drenched in the love of God even while our hand is still in the cookie jar. It's the father of the prodigal son running out to meet him joyfully---after he had spent all of his inheritance, and disgraced his family and himself. (Luke 15) Grace is a God who would come to rescue men from their sin by giving His own life, even as they beat Him, mocked Him, and hung Him on a Cross. "But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8 KJV)
Grace is knowing a wrong, experiencing a painful blow, being deeply hurt by someone you love and being able to see them through eyes of love and forgiveness anyway. It is loving without boundaries. It is giving when all you have known is taking. It is loving in the face of hating. It is the very essence and person of Jesus Christ. If you live long enough you recognize more and more the need for grace in your own life, and in the lives of others.
I did not have an easy childhood, things went on that should never go on in the life of any child. For years I was angry at my parents, couldn't understand their actions or the things that were done. But now, that they are both gone, now that I have lived some life, now that I have been in need of grace from others and have not received it, it has caused me to see Christ, and His grace in new and deeper ways. My parents also had rough pasts, particularly my mom, and I believe now that they truly did the best they could with the past they had. I can extend grace to them because I have received such great grace from God in Christ. I have no right to hold anything against them because God did not hold anything against me. We all need to extend grace rather than wrath to others.
If not for His grace I would not be here typing this now. If not for His grace I would not have known the love and acceptance of true friends. If not for His grace I would have been a statistic instead of a survivor. If not for His grace I would not have known what true love looks like. If not for His grace I would be "stuck in my old sin-dead life, incapable of responding to God--but God brought me alive--right along with Christ!" (The Message)
So, the next time you feel like you have been wronged, the next time you are offended, the next time you are betrayed, abused, rejected, or taken for granted: take a moment, look at the Cross, pray and don't respond in kind: instead respond with grace and mercy, express the love of God rather than the love of judgement or vengeance...
Grace---It really is amazing!!!!!!!!
To find out more about my blog or my writing please visit my website at hawkewriter.com
Anne Marie Hawke
qUIET IN CHAOS
Quiet in Chaos is a blog about nothing, everything, and all things inbetween…it’s a space, an ellipsis, a deep pause. Life can be chaotic, and often needs more moments of quiet…So join me as I share and give through the written word, the place I find my Quiet in Chaos…