Written by Heather Shelley
“There’s only grace. There’s only love. There’s only mercy and believe me, it’s enough. The sins are gone…without a trace. There’s nothing left now, there’s only grace.”
- Matthew West “Only Grace”
What a great song. Such beautiful words from Matthew West. You may even have nodded your head in agreement as you read them – yes, Lord…thank you for your grace.
Do you truly believe those pretty words that Mr. West worked so hard to put together?
Do you truly believe that God’s grace is enough??
Do you truly believe that God’s grace is enough to get you through the times you don’t have enough money and you still need gas or groceries?
Do you truly believe that God’s grace is enough to get you through the illness you’re facing?
Do you truly believe that God’s grace is enough to get you through your day with the boss who’s always barking at you?
Do you truly believe that God’s grace is enough to help you quit looking back at all that stuff you did in your past?
Do you truly believe that His grace really is enough to drown out the lies you tell yourself every morning that keep you from achieving your goals?
We all doubt that. God’s grace was enough to bring us through that one thing, but we might have an apprehension about this one thing.
Here’s the truth: God’s grace is enough to cover us.
All of us.
The drug addict.
His grace is enough to cover those who know Him and those that don’t.
God’s grace is more than enough to cover those who stumble and those who walk gracefully with Him.
It is only by God’s amazing grace that you and I are even drawing breath right at this very moment.
Don’t forget how big God’s grace truly is today.
Especially when you have to deal with a difficult person at work.
Or that one person you know who is so radically different from you.
Maybe it’s just a stranger who’s a challenge to your day.
God’s grace is given in abundance to them.
Just. Like. You. And. Me.
Now, I’m not saying this “extending grace to others” thing is a piece of cake – sometimes one of the hardest things to do is give a little grace to someone you just want to slap real hard. “They don’t deserve that kind of grace!!” you think to yourself.
But, remember, kiddo…neither do I…nor do you.
Yet, we are given such healing grace – freely and abundantly – every single moment of our lives.
This is the hardest one for me to wrap my head around: if God gives His grace to me, what makes it okay for me to give grace to someone or to withhold it from them? We’re not any better than God, are we???
Why do we, as humans, judge who is truly worthy of God’s grace and mercies…and who is not???
I went to church one day and a couple of real “rock-a-billy” kids came to visit. They were church hunting, and they were seriously the cutest couple and I was SO excited to see them there – everyone looked so homogenous next to them…AND they were Christ Lovers! Woo hoo!!
But you know what I noticed more than that young couple? The fact that so few people in the congregation went out of their way to welcome them to church that morning.
Those kids were different.
They were very different looking.
They had tattoos.
And they even had some piercings!
Oh, the humanity.
So, by mere looks alone, some of our “good church goers” decided those two different-looking kids weren’t worthy of so much as a “Hello!” or even a simple “Welcome!”!!!
Where was the grace that morning – right there in the church foyer?
Harder to find than Waldo, I tell ya.
Let’s say, for grins and giggles, that our little “different couple” had shown up for worship in beige suits. Would their change in clothing somehow have qualified them enough to be acceptable for even a hint of God’s mighty grace?
Moses was a murderer, you know.
He killed a guy because he didn’t think the guy was treating his friend too nicely.
Moses thought no one saw what he did, and he thought it was all good since he didn’t think anyone saw him kill that guy.
But, the problem is: people did see what Moses did.
But worse than THAT…God saw it. God saw that Moses was a murderer.
Yet, in spite of it, Moses was still worthy of God’s grace.
So much so, in fact, that God used Moses in a pretty mighty way. (You might remember a little chat with some flaming shrubbery and a couple of little rock tablets he brought down after a hike up the mountain.)
In our eyes, we would have easily determined that Moses was NOT deserving of God’s grace. And we would have made sure he would NEVER have been used to do something great after such a crime as murder!
But, God knew Moses.
And he knew his heart.
God knows my heart.
And God knows your heart.
He knows the heart of the guy who was rude to you in traffic today.
He knows the heart of your boss that humiliates you in front of everyone for being ten minutes late.
He knows the heart of the woman making a scene at the customer service desk.
He knows your heart.
Especially when you feel like Moses – like you’re a complete and total failure and hope no one else sees the truth.
In spite of all He knows about you, God still loves you.
He just wants to wrap you up in His huge, warm blanket of grace and cradle you in His arms until you feel better about your place in His plan.
No, life isn’t pretty.
And extending grace to some people – especially a “Mr. or Mrs. Difficult” you don’t even know – isn’t easy.
But just try today to make your Father happy by showing a little grace to someone…maybe you could just start in one teeny, tiny, little, itty-bitty portion of your day.
Even if it has to be the person who took the last chocolate-glazed donut AND the last drop of coffee.