Grace Defined?

grace1

“The original Hebrew word here could be and should be rendered “grace”—“that I may show grace for Jonathan’s sake”…Grace is positive and unconditional acceptance in spite of the other person. Grace is a demonstration of love that is undeserved, unearned, and unrepayable.” (Chuck Swindoll, David: A Man of Passion and Destiny, page 279, LP)

I have to admit that even though I’m a Bible college graduate and have been a pastor for almost 20 years, grace for much of those years was a theological concept. It is one of those wonderful ideals we love to sing about, but do we truly understand what that word means? “Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound…I once was lost, but now I’m found…”

Grace has become for us this static moment in our walk with God. “The moment” everything began for us. It’s the moment we found God (as if he was the one lost). This is yesterday’s grace.

I have learned, and am continuing to learn, that this is not how it was intended to be. Grace is not just some fixed moment in time, but rather a flowing river that carries us along. We find ourselves sometimes drifting in His approval and favor, and other times, we experience his love like the rapids, quick and furious. Grace is his love toward us, never relenting, never forsaking, never letting go.

Grace is more than the beginning line in the race, but rather the companion with whom we run. If we do not understand this love, we will find ourselves searching for it in other things: food, sex, drugs, alcohol, religion, and much more. How can we begin to know this love? We have to begin by understanding who Grace is.

Am I alone in learning this lesson? Is this something only I am striving to know? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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