2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”
Genuinely Receive Acceptance & Compassion Equably
In 2006 Jamie Tworkowski wrote a story called To Write Love on Her Arms about helping a friend through her struggle with drug addiction, depression, and self-injury. The piece was so hauntingly beautiful that it quickly went viral, giving birth to a non-profit organisation of the same name. The organisation’s name is a direct reference to the first person the organisation helped to receive treatment for addiction and self-harm, a young addict who self-harmed by cutting the words “F**k Up” on her arm with a razor blade. The group’s founder and a group of friends stayed with her in order to “be her church, the body of Christ coming alive to meet her needs, to write love on her arms”. (Wikipedia)
We all need GRACE. We all need to genuinely receive acceptance & compassion equably. In a world that is so keen to criticise and condemn, we desperately need grace; in a world that is so keen to ostracise and outcast, we desperately need acceptance; in a world that is so keen to point the finger and pull down, we desperately need compassion; and in a world that is so fickle and fitful, we desperately need to find stability and security – we need that grace, acceptance and compassion to be equable, and not here today and gone tomorrow. And above all, we need it to be genuine. All too often we hear one thing, but see another; people say one thing, but behave in complete contrast to what they say.
In the words of Jamie Tworkowski:
We are all a people in need.
We are not perfect.
We are not machines.
We make mistakes.
We need grace.
We need compassion.
We need help at times.
We need other people.
And that’s OK.”
Grace, according to the dictionary, has a number of definitions, from “elegance or beauty of form, manner, motion or action; a pleasing or attractive quality or endowment,” to “favour or goodwill; mercy, clemency or pardon.” In Biblical terms it means “the freely given, unmerited favour and love of God.” Put short, it’s undeserved favour; it’s goodness given or shown to us even though we don’t deserve it. We all need grace – and the grace of God is freely given to those who believe. In the Amplified version of the Bible it says:
But He has said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you [My loving kindness and My mercy are more than enough – always available – regardless of the situation]; for [My] power is being perfected [and is completed and shows itself more effectively] in [your] weakness.’ 2 Corinthians 12:9 (AMP)
Sadly, grace is not so widely available in the world – it often depends on the situation. God’s grace, however, is “always available – regardless of the situation.” It doesn’t matter what you have said or done – however bad, however serious, however sinister – God’s grace is always available.
As Christians we are called to be an example of God – we are called to act in a manner that is worthy of our calling as Christians. But, sadly, we often fall short. We often find it difficult – like everyone else – to show grace at all times to everyone. But that is what we should strive towards – however difficult or demanding. We are called to show God’s grace to others.
We don’t always get it right – and we ask for God’s forgiveness when we get it wrong. The world today is full of people who are lost, least, lonely and even lepers in today’s society. We’re a people in need, we’re not perfect, we make mistakes, we need grace. Just as that young lady who carved the words “F**k Up” on her arm with a razor blade – we need to Genuinely Receive Acceptance & Compassion Equably – we need GRACE.
May you find GRACE today; in the precious name of our Saviour, Christ Jesus, I pray; Amen.