“…that’s exactly how this grace thing works…”

The post title phrase is from “Roll Away Your Stone” by Mumford and Sons.  Defining Grace is not as easy as it might sound.  One way to begin might be to start with your life.  Where did your life come from?  Did you ask to be born?  Most folks would answer “No, I did not ask to be born.”  But here you are.  Your life is a gift, given to you, unearned.  You came into being without having to prove that you were worthy of a single thing.

It takes some time to understand that the love of God is offered in a similar manner.  Pastor Steve Holmes writes:  God loves without regard to our “worthiness”.  When you catch a glimpse of that, it is possible to get swept up by that love.  The feeling of being “swept up” is Grace.  The knowledge that we don’t have to do anything to earn that love, is not easy to achieve.  When we understand it…that is “Grace“.  In this religion love is life, and so rather than seeking survival, power, security and esteem, we seek to live in love with God and all beings. Rather than trying to acquire life by our own effort or even our own faith, we receive it as a gift. There are commandments we follow and principles we observe, but the highest value in this religion is living in love.

Having found it true that certain moments capture the feeling of other moments; we desire these moments to show us how we want other moments to be.  The problem is we can’t demand that Grace to “show up”.   One theologian says it this way:  “To speak of grace is to say that the things most worth expecting are the things that are unexpected.  Our explicit anticipations will be fulfilled or disappointed.  But those things we do not anticipate, those things that come as surprise-ah, those are the moments that reshape us and nurture us for yet more surprises.”

Today notice when you are tempted to sacrifice being loving for being right: getting your way, winning your argument, proving your worthiness. Open your heart to God’s love continually pouring through you, so that each moment might be your love song, your devoted prayer, your act of love for God and for all people, all beings, all Creation. You didn’t earn this love, so receive it for yourself and give it to your neighbors.

Yeah…”that’s exactly how this grace thing works.”

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