Today, I need to remind myself of this.
There are endless opportunities to give out grace to people, aren’t there? And that sounds all nice when you're feeling generous and it applies to a tired store clerk you say a kind word to or an obnoxious driver you let into your lane.
But then there is that one difficult person – maybe you’re related to them, maybe you work with them, maybe you live with them - who doesn’t seem to respond to your offers of grace. And you get weary and grumpy and anything but grace-full. What happened?
Instead of grace, you were really giving something you expected thanks for. Not a gift at all but a trade.
I’ll be nice if you appreciate me.
I’ll forgive you but you had better change.
I am so SO SO glad that God didn’t offer me a trade. Because I continue to under-appreciate Him, forget to thank Him and stay frustratingly messed up. I don’t thank Him for His goodness to me often enough. I don’t even recognize His forgiveness. I continue to be proud and self-righteous and critical. A difficult person.
No, He gives me His grace though I don’t deserve it at all. Whether I appreciate it or not.
Whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out His grace on me. 1 Cor 15:10
And apparently it’s not optional for us to give that same undeserved kindness.
God gave me the special responsibility of extending His grace to you. Eph 3:2
So we can’t wait for the day when we’ll feel like being kind in the face of grumpy.
What we can do is give what we have. And we happen to be rich in grace... immeasurable grace.
So go. Give it the same way it came to you. Undeserved. Unrecognized. Unending.
You just might be surprised at what happens.