From his fullness we have all received grace upon grace. ~ John 1:16
“Sometimes I blurt out words that hurt other people. In trying to hide my insecurity, I become bossy, controlling and impatient. With ears tickled by the praise of others, my mood can fluctuate from joyful to despondent on the whim of someone’s opinion. But I don’t want to be this way! I often wonder if anyone will ever really love me.”
I was “that girl.”
Striving. Enslaved. Rigid. Yes, a Christ-follower. Carrying around God’s gift of grace, but never bothering to open it and embrace its richness as a way of life.
But here I am.
Transformed by an encounter with Jesus, who stooped and lifted me out of my pit, relocating me to holy ground. The humbled recipient of a gift I don’t deserve and could never earn by my own efforts—God’s amazing grace.
Saul was the last person you’d expect to be picked by God. He hated followers of the Way and was complicit in the stoning murder of Stephen, “spewing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples” (Acts 9:1).
Hopeless, right? Not in God’s sight. God saw something in Saul that could be used for the Kingdom. Instead of punishing him, He waylaid Saul on the road to Damascus and that one act of grace turned Saul the persecutor into Paul the missionary of Christ.
Do you feel like the least likely person to be gifted with a life of love, grace, and purpose? You are in fine company with Saul and yours truly. Receive that second chance, and begin to view others with fresh eyes of compassion and mercy.
The New Testament Greek word charis is translated “grace” and “favor,” and is the root of charisma, for “gift.” Grace gifts abound. They are everywhere, just waiting to be opened. If I am in a hurry, I will miss them. If I am distracted, I will ignore them. But for anyone weary from effort yet thirsty for more, God offers grace which prompts gratitude.
Over this Summer, for the next 14 weeks, I’d love to unpack these word gifts of grace and gratitude for you adapted from my book “Ordinary Graces.” Feel free to share widely.
BENEDICTION: My child, welcome to this place of grace. Just come as you are. These gifts may change your life—My love, acceptance, and grace. For you. Not because of anything you’ve done. But simply because you are.
Every Blessing, Lucinda
“Helping You Choose a Life of Serenity and Strength”
©2022 Lucinda Secrest McDowell www.LucindaSecrestMcDowell.com
Lucinda Secrest McDowell is a storyteller and seasoned mentor who engages both heart and mind while “Helping You Choose a Life of Serenity & Strength.” She has authored 16 books including “Soul Strong – 7 Keys to a Vibrant Life” , “Life-Giving Choices – 60 Days to What Matters Most,” “God’s Purpose for You,” and “The Courage to Write.” (Purchasing my books here benefits me as an Amazon associate.) She writes from “Sunnyside” cottage in New England and shares encouraging words weekly at LucindaSecrestMcDowell.com
Want to read all of the “Grace & Gratitude Summer Blogs”? Click HERE to read as each one goes live. These 14 weeks of blogs — adapted from Lucinda’s award-winning book “Ordinary Graces” — come out each Wednesday morning June 1st through August 31st. Thanks for reading. Click HERE to add your email to get blogs weekly in your in box.
Whew, did I need to hear this today as my speech wasn’t filled with much grace this morning towards my husbands unintentional actions
Through your summer blog I look for to the reminders to shine like Jesus.
“Grace” seems so much more precious and understood the older I get – thanks for your words that constantly encourage🥰
I look forward to your summer series, Cindy. Ordinary Graces is one of my favorite devotionals.
OUCH! I too use to fly between those 2 feeling suddenly but only in my head as I am not a vocal person so my thoughts seldom leave my mouth outloud BUT i think even though my thoughts do not wound others they hurt Jesus! So yes as I have gotten older and more mature in my walk it has gotten better but OUCH it still happens.