Sunday, May 22, 2016

struggling with grace

I know what grace is. I've been taught about this concept since I was a toddler. 
Grace: undeserved favor. 

But really knowing it, feeling it, living a life of grace is a battle I fight everyday.

Because earning it makes more sense to me.

When I sit down to read a book for an hour and should be cleaning a bathroom.
When I yell at my kids instead of calmly explaining myself.
When I have ice cream after 8:00 at night.
When I forego the "to-do" list for the "want to-do" list.
When I purchase a plant for my yard and then let it die because I didn't get it planted in time.
When I start a project and leave it half-completed for a month.
(Wow - now that I've started writing, the list in my mind keeps getting longer and longer!)
Starting the dryer on the same load of laundry for the 3rd time because I can't get it out in a reasonable amount of time to avoid wrinkles.
Forgetting to respond to texts, purchasing birthday gifts at the last minute, rsvping late...
Spending too much money at Ross (which is nearly impossible to do!!)
Spending too much money at Starbucks (which is entirely possible for me to do...)
Getting to bed too late, sometimes simply because I need to watch ONE MORE EPISODE on Netflix.

People! I live a life of guilt!! 

I'm sure not all of you live life this way. And I'm not exactly sure why I do. 
But it is SO hard to get out from underneath this life of "shoulds" and "musts" and "if/thens" and try to embrace grace.

Maybe it's because we live in a world of legalism, of fairness, of earning what we deserve from other people. Maybe there are just not enough examples of grace in our world. 

But I am desperately trying to change my mindset to embrace a Father who loves me unconditionally, who sees me through His incredible eyes of grace. I don't have to earn it. And if I continue to try to earn His love, I am shortchanging the credit He is due as my Heavenly Father. He is full of grace, beyond what I can fathom.

(Little did I know this would be a two-fold lesson for me today - that God...He's so sneaky when He gets me writing...)

And maybe it's time to start adding more grace to each and every relationship I have, to treat the people I come into contact with with a bit more of that undeserved favor. You know, like when you go through the Starbucks drive-thru only to find that the person ahead of you paid for your coffee (or when I pulled up to the window and a friend a few cars behind me had already told them that my coffee was going to be paid for!) 

Tomorrow's goals: 
1. Be grace is someone's life.
2. Read my book for an hour and be okay with a messy bathroom.


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