This morning there is gray. The sky drizzles down bit by silver bit and I sit and listen to the washing machine churn. The goldenrod bends low in the meadow behind our house and the chickadees perch on those swaying stalks to preen. The rain washes us all clean.
It’s not hard to get caught up in the try-hard life. One too many “yeses” and before you know it, there you are, dreaming about the next thing in the middle of a Friday night. You might wake with a start at too-early a.m. and chase sleep away with burning thoughts. You might fret and worry and turn things around and around in your mind when you know darn well this is the bed you made and you have to sleep in it.
But there is grace.
Saturday, I sat at the feet of Beth Moore (well, not really—technically I was a bit above her in the arena) and listened to her talk about grace. She helped me see that my definition of grace is too narrow, too shallow, too small.
The Greek word for grace used in the New Testament, she said, is charis. And she gave us a big long definition. Charis, she said, means grace—particularly that which causes joy, pleasure, gratification; favor, acceptance, for a kindness granted or desired…a benefit, thanks, the absolutely free expression of the loving kindness of God to men, unearned and unmerited favor…it changes the individual into a new creature without destroying her individuality.
It’s that last part that I’ve been sitting with: it changes the individual into a new creature without destroying her individuality.
I’d never thought of grace in quite that way, I guess, but—yes, it’s true, isn’t it? When we accept the flood of God’s grace into our lives fully, it re-orders everything—makes me new. Beth urged us to live in this new self—not to hold on to that old self for comfort.
Isn’t this a message I need to hear on a regular basis? That God loves me no matter, that his grace will cover me with love if I desire it, and that I am made new in Christ.
This morning, I look at these hands, this face, this body…and I wonder at the wonder of it all. Made new.
I was blessed to spend some time with Lisa Buffaloe of Living Joyfully Free recently. We had fun talking about grace and faith and the book I’m working on. If you are interested, you can listen in here.
This week, at The High Calling, we are continuing our discussion of Life after Art by Matt Appling. This week, Sandra Heska King shares. Will you join us?
How do you embrace the God-joy? Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. Grab my button at the bottom of the page and join us:
The Playdates button: