Skip to main content

Demonstration, please

For God saved us and called us to live a holy life. He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was his plan from before the beginning of time—to show us his grace through Christ Jesus. (2 Timothy 1:9 NLT)
You have probably heard it said that actions speak louder than a thousand words, right? Well, let me also tell you that grace is only truly understood in action - there are just no words to really describe grace. It is undeserved - unmerited favor. It is demonstrated love.
It is the kind of demonstrated love that reached out to the one with leprosy, whose body was marked by missing fingers and toes, scarred with untold sores, and a "stigma" society placed upon them as "unclean" and "rejected".
It is the kind of demonstrated love that takes notice of the small man perched in a tree, while attempting to catch even a glimpse of the "great teacher", while countless others overlook him because he is not of "great stature".
It is the kind of demonstrated love that recognizes the one whose disease plagues her body while making it almost impossible for her to press through the crowds, but whose determined hope in what others may see as "impossible" pressed her onward until she touched just the hem of his garment.
It is the kind of demonstrated love that opened the eyes of the one born blind, left to beg day after day for his very subsistence, humbled to the point of being labeled an "outcast" by those who saw his "imperfection" as a sign of judgment upon his life for some sin.
Grace isn't understood in the mind - it is understood and embraced in the heart. It is "known" in ways we almost cannot put into words, but it has actions all its own. Actions such as liberation of a ravaged body, restoration of a hurting spirit, or release of an anguished soul. Grace isn't emotional, but it touches the depths of our emotions. It isn't mental, but it sets in order that which confounds, confuses, and condemns the soul. 
It may not mean much to some, but to one whose life has been set free by the embrace of grace - it means labels falling away, status changing, and renewed hope refilling the empty spaces of one's life. Grace is "shown" - not just "known". It is "embraced" - not just given. It is "transforming" - not just a nice addition to our lives. It is demonstrated love - meaning it is revealed in actions on our behalf.
We may not fully understand grace in this lifetime, but we can be embraced in the richness of God's love revealed in the actions of grace - undeserved, unmerited love when our actions or condition probably deserved something quite the opposite of what is being demonstrated toward us. Grace isn't a "thing" - it is the demonstration of God's great love for each of us - even before we know we need the embrace of his love - he demonstrates his love toward us! 
Grace isn't just offered - it is demonstrated - not around us, but in us and through us. Love isn't known until it is fully shown - grace is God's love in action - it is his "show" of what it is he wants us to "know". Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Your full attention, please

My mother frequently uses the term "Listen to me!" as a way of getting my attention so that I actually stop, pay close attention, and hear out whatever her idea or issue is at the moment. It isn't always at the most convenient moment, nor is it always easy for her to get out whatever it is she wants to share. Yet, it is important enough for her to ask to for me to hear it, so I respond with, "I'm listening, mom", and she begins.  It isn't said in anger or in a moment of disappointment. Rather, these words are usually spoken in a "sing-song" manner, but with very specific intent - they are intended to get me to REALLY listen to what she was saying. Why? Because she knows she has something to say even if it is getting harder for her to say it! She has walked through much already, learned many lessons, and has the advantage of experience on her side, but the disadvantage of advancing age makes it harder and harder for her to actually form those t…

Getting at the heart of it all

Have you ever seen someone so good with their skinning knife they can just peel away the hide of an animal without a rip or tear, no waste of any of the meat just below that skin? I have seen some fishermen able to fillet their catch with such skill not even one bone is found in the fillet. How do they learn this skill? I think it comes to them through practice and with the employment of the right 'tool' to do the job at hand. There is comfort in knowing that God means what he says and his Word will come to pass. His Word is like the scalpel in the skilled hands of a surgeon or the knife in the hands of the skilled hunter. As a nurse, I have seen the skillful use of the scalpel - dissecting away the finest of tissue to protect the healthy tissue and to expose the tissue that has become devitalized by disease or decay. I have also seen the damage done by a "blade" in the hands of one not trained or at all skilled in its use. The difference is beyond description.

God m…

Be a little salt

Ever wonder why Jesus left his disciples with the idea of being 'salt on this earth'? We don't fully appreciate salt these days because we aren't as accustomed to how it was used during the times Jesus spoke those words. We often have to put ourselves into the culture where the words are being recorded in order to fully comprehend the significance of their meaning. In the days of the disciples, salt was a basic "staple" of life. It was that which acted as "preservation" for everything. It also was the main seasoning of the dishes prepared - although there were other spices, salt was a 'staple'. Perhaps we would do well to look at some of the other functions of salt in order to see what Jesus may have meant when he referred to our lives a salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of the earth.

"Let me tell you why you are here. You're here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltin…