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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Graber

I Love Jesus and His Amazing Grace!

Updated: Nov 15, 2023

1 Timothy 1:12-14: "12I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. 13Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. 14 The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus."

Lately, I have been reflecting on the amazing grace Jesus showed sinners during his time on Earth. Biblical accounts show Jesus' grace and mercy in situations that push the boundaries of reason. For example, in the 1 Timothy verse above, Paul is talking about the grace Jesus showed despite the many sins Paul commited. Jesus saw to the heart of Paul and poured grace on Paul. That grace eventually worked a change in Paul.


I guess that's why so many of the great gifts Jesus bestowed are called miracles. Despite what was coming against many people, Jesus overcame obstacles. Showing people how to overcome sin with goodness, mercy, grace, and love brought out the best in (well, most) people, and Jesus' example is still present for people like me to adopt and live by. Yet, when my turn comes to show grace, I often fall short. I feel more like a judge, a vindicator, or a proslytizer when what I really want to do is show grace and mercy like Jesus.


As a college instrutor, I have ample opportunities to demonstrate grace, but I fall short most times. Psalm 45:1 says, "...my tongue is the pen of a skillful writer." Words can tear down or build up. In this Psalm, the writers is using words to praise the king God sent (David, I think. He kind of dominates the Psalms). Verse 2 sings of the king, "You are the most excellent of men and your lips have been annointed with grace, since God has blessed you forever." Grace has to do with the words and actions that desmonstrate goodwill, honor, or underserved favor to others. In essense, this is why the Bible calls grace a gift: grace can't be earned by good deeds and actions; grace is a choice--maybe even a Jesus-level super power. After all, Jesus' grace and mercy overcame the sin of the world.


Recently, my colleague had a student stop by and unload. We are in the home stretch of the semester. Students often feel stress about grades and exams during this time of year. Venting is prevalent. Most of the time, my responses come from a place of feeling similarly overwhelmed and frustrated about students' complaints, but what they really need is grace.


My colleague--let's call him Bobby--handled the situation with what I would call amazing grace. Honestly, I can't count the number of times I bit my tongue's retort to this student's outlandish and sometimes even rude statements! Yet, Bobby listened thoughtfully, responded with a carefully crafted metaphor appropriate for the situation, and let the student un-wind his sails.


In the end, the student walked off unsatisfied that his complaints would not change the world but satisfied that he'd been heard; Bobby turned back to his computer and continued to work. I sat back in my chair stumped and disrupted by my own haunted disquiet. Bobby had just demonstrated grace in raw form--fully taking in and accepting the student regardless of his position about learning, honoring the student despite his words with a firm and gentle redirection but also with love and grace and mercy. Friends, this is Jesus working through Bobby. I want Jesus to work through me, too.


Without grace, I cannot be saved. The very grace of God, the gift of Jesus, wipes my sin clean. There is nothing I can do to improve my own sinfulness or earn favor or forgiveness except by accepting Jesus as my savior and following his example. Ephesians 2:8-10 says, "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God--9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Grace is God's gift to people; Jesus is the example of how God wants people to act.


While I have not been doing a great job of demostrating grace, I resolve to try harder to model the example Jesus gives--to be less of a judge and vindicator and more merciful and gracious to those whose struggles may just be in need of the kind of support God has put me in a position to offer.


Last week, Julie spoke about gratitudes. We have once again picked up our habit of 3 daily gratitudes. Not only do I feel more uplifted in my attitude, but I am also finding the ways God is trying to do a work in me. Today, I am grateful for the example of Bobby's grace inspiring me to write about my epiphany and need to change my own behavior; I am grateful for this platform to share my personal revelation and hope this finds others who need a similar reminder of God's grace (especially the examples through the works of Jesus); most of all, I am grateful for God's amazing grace--which comes with the salvation through the death and resurrection of Christ Jesus.


Friends, have you tried on some grace lately? I'd love to hear about your examples! As for me, I am working on changing my disposition to increase my grace practices. More on that in future blogs...In the meantime, here's a song by Phil Wickham extolling the amazing grace of God!


God bless you, Michelle



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