The Least, First

Monte Asbury's blog

A question about grace

with 3 comments

My friend Georgann wrote the question below, hoping some of you would respond.

Try it! Click on "No Comments" (or "10 Comments," or whatever it says when you get there, just below).

I’m reading in 1 Peter 5:10 where it says, “God of all grace.” So, I started praying for grace, that God would lavish His grace on me (Eph 1:8) and that He would help me do my part to “see to it that no one misses the grace of God.” (Heb 12:15) I asked that He would make His grace evident in my life, changing me and transforming me.

And then I asked myself: What am I asking, for, really? What does it mean to have more grace in my life? In a previous verse, Peter instructs us to resist the devil. That seems more concrete. I can ask God to give me strength to resist and I will know when I have successfully (or not) resisted. But more grace? What would that look like?

What would it mean to have more grace in my heart? In my soul? In my mind? Certainly, more grace in me would smooth off many of my rough edges. Like changing me from one of those fat spiny fish into one sleek and smooth, easily slicing through the waters of life without damaging or harming others. More grace would make me more patient and kind, less irritable and demanding. So then, how is it different from love? It seems like it must be, but how?

My Webster’s defines grace as: 1.a.) unmerited divine assistance given man for his regeneration or sanctification. b.) a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine grace c.) a virtue coming from God. That didn’t seem as helpful as I’d hoped. I guess it’s more of this virtue that I’m asking for, but…?

Maybe I’m just trying to quantify the unquantifiable! Maybe it’s just like many things in our walk of faith. I’ll never really arrive. I’ll never get as far as I want to get. I just get to move on ahead, one small step at a time. I don’t know I’ve passed a milestone until much later. Maybe in 5 years from now, I will see how I have more of this virtue of grace.

Anyway, that’s where I was meandering around, and I’d be glad for feedback! Thanks! Georgann

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Written by Monte

June 10, 2006 at 12:23 pm

3 Responses

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  1. OK, here’s my thought: When you get grace, you get Jesus. He was “full of grace.” “Everything of God gets expressed in him …” [Col 2.9 The Message].

    So I spend a lifetime looking at Jesus, knowing that what God is planning to give me will look like Jesus looks – and that anything that doesn’t look like him is suspect, no matter how religious it may be.

    To know what grace is, I think I need to watch him in the gospels more and more closely. His example there will define it with an accuracy words can’t express.

    Monte

    June 28, 2006 at 12:18 pm

  2. I’ve always thought of grace as any and all gifts from God, whether it’s an ability to get through something hard, a delightful (or intensely painful) awareness of God’s presence, a really good deal from a thrift shop, or whatever. So, for me, praying for grace is asking God for whatever he wants to give me. Asking that he would “grace” me with whatever I need, even when I don’t want it or don’t know I need it.

    Amy/Adela

    June 22, 2006 at 1:01 pm

  3. You’ve started me thinking about this, Georgann. Exactly what IS the difference between love and grace? They seem interchangeable. When I try thinking of what grace would look like or feel like or sound like – it has the same characteristics as love. Although, when I think of grace, the word “forgiveness” comes to mind more often, along with “spiritual maturity.”

    June

    June 21, 2006 at 3:35 pm

  4. Monte,

    I have uploaded my projects in Ghana under personal on my website. The Nicaragua items are under classes if you choose to look at them.

    Nice seeing you at Lori’s reunion.

    Chris

    Chris Schrage

    June 14, 2006 at 9:54 am


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