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Right place - Right time

Are there times when you feel like someone has you right where they want you? You are probably not being paranoid! In fact, scripture declares God has us right where he wants us - in the place where he is free to shower grace and kindness upon our lives. If you stop to consider the potential in those words you might just stand in awe and wonder how a great big God could care enough about one small human in the scheme of millions upon millions upon millions of humans. You might not fully comprehend the depth of his love, or how far it will go to see a life touched just as it needs to be touched, but that doesn't keep him from showering grace and kindness in immeasurable amounts day after day in your life!

Now God has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all his idea, and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish! We don’t play the major role. If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing. (Ephesians 2:8-9 MSG)

As important as it is for us to remember we don't play the major role in grace coming into our lives, it is equally as important for us to remember God isn't finished in the grace department. We need a continual renewal of his grace in our lives. It is in this renewal process that we begin to 'join him in the work he does'. The 'work' begins with grace, is renewed by grace, and remains because of grace. There are good things he has planned for our lives - through grace and his kindness he readies us for those things. Sometimes I think we want to just sit around and enjoy our grace - God has a different plan in mind. He wants us to use that grace in ways only we are capable of using and displaying it. 

God doesn't waste any experience - in fact, he transforms the things some might label as 'bad' or 'horrible' in an experience in our lives. It isn't that he changes the experience - he changes what we get out of it by his grace. We might be ridiculed, but he takes those small truths in someone's ridiculing message and applies grace to show us just where and how we may be able to change something within our character that helps us display Christ better. We might be held back from promotion, but he applies grace and shows us ways in which we were intended to be right where we are right now (perhaps because he knew the instability in that position we wanted so badly).

Grace never finishes its work in our lives. Grace is needed to help when our words have created chaos in our day. Grace is required when we haven't a clue where to go or what to do next because we have made a muddle of a situation. Grace is granted each time we just take a moment to breathe in God's presence in our lives. Grace has a 'countering effect' - it soothes, sets straight, realigns, creates peace. The work we are to be doing is found in becoming instruments of that grace in this world - to be the 'countering effect' in someone else's hurting life. We sometimes think we are never in the right place at the right time, but in God's timing and with his help, we become the extension of his grace and kindness where and when it is most needed. It may not seem like much, but each display of his grace is actually a stepping stone for someone else's journey toward grace! Just sayin!

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