Just this past weekend, I started to read The Shack. (yes, I'm probably one of the few remaining people on the planet who hasn't already read the Shack) In the introduction, a quote jumped out at me.
I suppose since most of our hurts come through relationships, so will our healing and I know that grace rarely makes sense for those looking in from the outside.
That quote has come to mind more than once lately; and with it the pondering of how it applies to my life and the relationships. For starters, exactly what is it? Ninja Words...(A really fast dictionary... fast like a ninja) defines grace as:
free and undeserved favour, especially of God. Unmerited divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification.
I have also heard grace defined as "unmerited favor." For this post, that is the definition we'll go with....
I found a few quotes on grace that fit this definition.
Grace is free sovereign favor to the ill-deserving.
Benjamin B Warfield
“God is no faultfinder, always looking for things to condemn in us. He estimates us at our best, not our worst.”
So is that how grace works? By looking beyond what we see smack dab in front of us and envisioning the person as they could be...as they will be...when our Father is finished with them we can somehow...sometimes..bring out those very qualities. Once a person is caught in that downward spiral, sometimes grace...unmerited favor...is the way to stop the descent. In a recent email, my dear friend annie said
every masterpiece looks like crap when it's still in progress :)
During certain periods in everyone's life, because the masterpiece is in progress, everything looks like crap.
"Just keep telling her who she is." was a bit of advice given to me about my wayward daughter. I wish I could say that my faith never wavered, and that I always built her up instead of tearing her down...but that would not be the truth. I guess I am just a masterpiece in the works as well...
I came upon a poem called St. Francis and the Sow by Galway Kinnell. Below is an excerpt that seems to fit
....though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness,
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within