The Messiness of Grace

We took communion today in church.  It was a somber and holy moment.  I had my two boys, ages 10 and 6 with me.  They both wanted to partake.  (I want juuiicceee too!!)  So we all got our little crackers and plastic thimbles of juice.  We bowed our heads to prayerfully drink the juice when I see my boys- heads bowed, eyes squeezed shut, holding their little cups high up over their heads.  Oh dear.  (I later found out they were ‘holding them up to God’) which would have been fine and dandy but my 6 year old; Gabe, spilled his juice all over his head.  Oops.  I saw their sober sincerity combined with the wet hair and purple streaked neck and got an awful case of the giggles.  You know- when you giggle at a very inappropriate moment and can not stop.  This is why we sit in the back row, people.  20150502_140714_resized

Grace is messy.  Sometimes literally.  As long as we are clad in this tent of fallen flesh on this fallen planet we will never do this thing perfectly.

I know I identify so much with my ancestors Adam and Eve.  I am so prone to wander.  So prone to go after the things God knows will hurt me.  And then so prone to try to hide my true condition from God.

I think one of the best things about Heaven is that we will finally be totally free from all the destructiveness of the curse wrecking havoc on our minds, wills, and emotions.  We will be free to fellowship and worship our creator without any hindrance whatsoever.  We will finally be in perfect peace.

The aspect of grace I marvel at most is this idea of us, like Adam and Eve, hiding and crouching and accursed, and God meeting us there.

It is messy.  The term ‘blood, sweat, and tears’ must have originated at the cross.

Jesus came to our mess.  He loves us in our mess.  When we get too tired to deal with the mess he carries us.

I wish I were a better ‘before and after’ picture (who doesn’t love those?) of a super-Christian.  But I’m not.  I am still a very flawed sinner in many ways and I still need grace like I need air.

I think about how far I have come though.  I was a teen mom.  I came from a legacy of alcoholism and dysfunction.  There were traumatic things that I don’t yet feel comfortable talking about.  But, interwoven through it all is the thread of grace.  He rescued me at my worst.  I’ve come so far but like my pastor says, I should have a sign on my back that says ‘be patient, God’s not done with me yet.’

“We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us.” 1 Cor. 1:10

My hope and prayer is that we would be encouraged to know that God keeps on rescuing us.  He knows we are so frail and fragile, we don’t have it all together.  He knows.  One day every thing will be completely redeemed and made right.  But in the mean time God meets us in the messiness of our lives here.  He shines into our darkness.  He takes the broken pieces and makes something beautiful.

That is grace.

 

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