Last week was very special. We saw a window into the way God is transforming people by His grace. We were also reminded that God demonstrates His grace through His people. When we strive to be Jesus with skin on, people experience Christ’s touch. Theologically, grace is described as God’s unmerited favor toward human beings and our not getting what we deserve—both in terms of our own failing, and in terms of the abundance of God’s blessing towards us. Grace is also understood as a way of life towards others. Since God gives grace freely to all, we should extend grace towards one another.
If the grace-full life of Christ is the goal for those who follow Him, each day grants the opportunity to practice, to grow in the very grace Christ personifies. Each day brings circumstances and situations that call for a response. Instead of fear, there can be compassion and hope. Instead of pride, there can be humility and hospitality. Instead of bitterness and resentment, there can be forgiveness or sacrificial giving. There is always a choice. And thankfully, there is always one who extends perfectly the very grace we need ourselves.
Without the recognition of the human need for forgiveness and the sort of grace that reaches far beyond anything we can offer, there is a failure to practice grace-full living with others. We are invited to follow after and practice in our relationships, what we have seen and experienced in Christ. Grace is both merciful and challenging. It is vital that we live out what we say we believe.