For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – Not by works, so that no one can boast, for we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:8-10
Grace is one of those words that has many different meanings. For a child, we say grace before a meal, I have a niece named Grace, and I often hear the expression “there but for the grace of God” when someone is referring to an unpleasant experience somebody else has had, and we’re thankful that it is not us!
When we get to God’s grace, I think of it as the light that blankets the club of believers that everyone can belong to. You don’t earn grace, it is freely given and it has been there always and will be there forever. This is also the verse that reminds me that it isn’t about me, it’s not about what I can do to earn God’s grace and what my neighbor is not doing to earn grace. It reminds us that we can be different, we can be un-perfect, we can be polar opposites in social and political beliefs, and we can be blanketed in the same kindness and forgiving love of God’s grace.
Dear Lord, help us to remember it is your purpose and planning that directs us through life. Give us courage to accept your gift of grace as leads us to tolerance and love.