What is grace? The Canvas Blog Team was asked to provide a blog answering just that. As you have already seen and will continue to see this month, the answer will be different depending on who you ask. Now, for the most part, the underlying themes and main points may be similar, but how each of us defines grace and relates it to our daily lives will vary from person to person.
I am excited to say that, while the dictionary defines grace as “favor shown in granting a delay or temporary immunity,” our God removed the word temporary from this definition when He sent His Son, Jesus Christ. If that doesn’t bring joy to your heart, then I don’t know what will. We do not have to worry about what we will do when God’s grace runs out as it does not run out. As Paul says in Romans 5:20-21, “The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” This does not, however, give us free reign to sin as we please. Even though grace is made available to cover our sins and as Paul says it is increased where sin is increased, we, as Christians, are called to live lives above reproach. Paul goes on to talk about this throughout the entire chapter of Romans 6.
The dictionary also defines grace as the “freely given” and “unmerited” favor and love of God. It is crucial that we understand that grace is not only freely given, but it is unmerited. There is absolutely nothing that we have done up to this point, are doing now, or can do in the future that will deserve the grace that our Father bestows on us. The Bible says in Ephesians 2:8-10, “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.”
Looking at Ephesians 2:8, it is important to note that it is written that we have been saved by grace, “through faith.” Honestly, I have a hard time truly understanding grace. I am the type of person that is always trying to justify things or reason things out. It is impossible to truly understand this grace logically as it is completely undeserved. That is where faith comes in. While I will also admit that I struggle with faith sometimes, we must have faith to receive this grace. This is not just something that I am hypothesizing, but as I just mentioned, that truth comes straight from the Word of God.
We, as Christians, by faith, need to begin to accept this grace and thank God daily for it. The Bible says that “He, who is forgiven much, loves much.” While I can’t speak for you, I can speak for myself with much certainty. I have been forgiven much. Somewhere, usually lost in the mix of all this, is a God who gives His children this free, unmerited gift of grace, and all that He wants in return from us is a relationship. Too often, we get caught up in other things, and we forget to spend time with God and we forget to thank him for His grace.
I challenge you in the next days, weeks, months and years to take time out of your busy schedule to reflect on what an awesome gift this grace is and to thank our Heavenly Father for such an amazing and undeserved gift.