Grace; unmerited favor, unearned benefits, unfounded blessings, undeserved gifts always is too good to be true. Grace can be experienced in ways like a free gift card to your favorite restaurant from a friend whom you hurt. Or forgiving your spouse without ever mentioning the infraction to anyone. Ever. And then giving them a footrub or a backrub without expecting one in return.
Quite often grace is God's amazing presence in overwhelming or difficult circumstances. Grace is not God waving His magic wand over our problem to solve it or take the suffering away. It is always the gift of His presence as we go through this particular pain or challenge.
Listen to Paul describe how he received grace from God.
"Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me."
2 Corinthians 12:8-9
Listen to St Augustine describe his experience with grace.
"What grace is meant to do is to help good people, not to escape their sufferings, but to bear them with a stout heart, with a fortitude that finds its strength in faith." St Augustine, City of God
Right now, in your circumstances can you see God's gift of grace for you? Do you see His outstretched hand through the mist of the challenge you are facing? Are you sensing His strength through something you wish was over or that God would take away? Are you peacefully singing in your heart, "The joy of the Lord is my strength." Is He bringing you the comfort, endurance and hope you need?
My prayer for you is one of my favorite Bible passages.
"May the God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13
Receiving Grace together,
Pastor Chris Reinertson enjoys all sports, especially those involving a ball. He loves to hang out with people and challenge them to be Jesus REVolutionizers.