Those of you reading this that know me well, know that I am very rarely at a loss for words. Yet as I sit down to write this post, I am struggling to put words to the thoughts that are in my mind right now.
I just finished an amazing book by Philip Yancey titled What's so Amazing About Grace? I bought this book about 3 years ago when I was struggling with the definition of grace. For some reason, I got the book, but I set it aside to read at a later time. I am not sure what compelled me to pick it up off the shelf. I am so thankful that I did.
As I was reading it I realized the answer to my question. I don't think that I was ready to read this book until now. I feel like another layer was stripped from my eyes and from my heart as I kept reading.
A statement I read that is reflected throughout the book is this, "Grace is Christianity's best gift to the world. . .Sadly to a world desperate for this grace the church sometimes presents one more form of ungrace."
I read the word "church" in this statement and I substitute it with my name. As a believer I am a part of that statement. I want to write more about grace, but I need more time to reflect on what I read and the pray that God will give me the words to express my thoughts.
The piece of this puzzle of grace that has my mind reeling is this: God does not love me anymore than he loves anyone else on this earth. I have a dear friend that has a lot of questions right now about faith. In fact, she has stated that the Bible has little meaning to her in her life. I have been wrestling with God about this for weeks. As I read this book, the thought that kept entering my mind is, God loves her just as much as he loves me. God wants her to love Him back. It is her decision, but despite how she feels right now, He loves her just the same.
I pray that as God continues to open my eyes and my heart. I pray that everyone I encounter will not see me as a person that feels I am superior because of my faith. I pray that I do not react to anyone with ungrace. I pray that I can show them the love that can only come from Him.
I cannot in words explain the feeling of grace that is overwhelming my heart right now. My eyes have been open to the fact that I opened my heart to Jesus Christ, but somehow I stopped there. I did not let Jesus transform my heart so that I would open my heart up to ALL people; friends, enemies, believers, and non-believers.
This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. Romans 3:22-24