Grace is a word that has many definitions. When we hear the word grace the first thing people probably think of is the blessing we say before a meal. They may also think of someone they know whose name is Grace. It’s a popular name again and many parents are choosing to give this beautiful name to their newborn daughters. But did you know that grace also has other meanings? One of those is to show a person kindness, even if they don’t deserve it. Showing grace to other people wasn’t always something that came easy for me. I was actually more inclined to NOT show grace to someone, especially if they had made me angry or wronged me in any way. It’s a natural human trait for us to react in a negative way when this happens. Over the years we have become hardened towards others and it has made us very far removed from what we were meant to be when God created us on that sixth day so long ago. For me learning to show grace to others didn’t come about until I had accepted that there really was a God and realizing that He had shown ME grace time and time again in my life.
Since learning that grace is so much more than that little speech before eating I’ve found many occasions to give it to others where I would not have before. A good example of that is going into a store and have an employee treat you rudely. Whereas before I may have reacted rudely back to them, either outwardly or thinking it in my head, I now stop and think this to myself: “Maybe there is something going on in their life that’s so bad it’s making them act this way even if they don’t mean to. Maybe their child is sick but they couldn’t afford to miss work to stay home and care for them. Maybe they are late on their rent and that’s why they can’t miss work to stay home with their sick child. Maybe their mother is suffering from Alzheimer’s and they can’t get help for her. Maybe the economy has been so bad that they just lost their home to foreclosure and they are not even sure where they will land next.” The point is this; no one knows what another person is going through. It’s easy to judge someone for what they’ve done or continue to do. But, until we actually put on that person’s shoes and walk in them, up and down the mountain they are trying so hard to conquer, we just don’t know what they are going through. We just DON’T know. Showing that person grace just might help to save their life. I have miles to go still in learning how to show grace to others every single time but I will get there. I have unwavering faith that I will.
I’ve been the recipient of grace in one area of my life for which I will be forever grateful. I can tell you that I certainly didn’t deserve that grace on most occasions but yet it was still shown to me. I give my thanks every single day for the grace this person has shown me. They did not have to show that grace nor do they have to continue to show it but thankfully they do. One day I will be able to properly repay this person’s kindness in a spectacular way. I can’t wait for that day to come because I feel like it will show them that the grace they showed me WAS worth it and it wasn’t a waste of their time after all. I hope that person will read this and realize that the grace they showed and continue to show was worth every bit of the trouble they’ve endured.