Grace is a dying word in most cultures as bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness harbors in the hearts of hurt people. Instead of experiencing the unmerited favor of God, guilt is preventing individuals from accepting this free gift, Romans 5:8. Meanwhile, the condition of forgiveness introduced by Jesus in Matthew 6:15 isn’t being met by followers, revoking the power of grace upon their lives.
While serving as a youth pastor in Indiana, one student was placed into my life to teach me about grace. Despite my attempts to reach out to this high school junior, I was her enemy, the adult who took the job of the person who led her to faith, Romans 10:9-10. On one occasion, her mother approached me, giving me a hug with tears in her eyes, confessing, “I’m sorry my daughter hates you!” This trial tested me, putting my faith into a spiritual fire, 1 Peter 1:6-7. Without this encounter, I might not understand the power of Grace today.
On Sunday, I attended a friend’s church, needing to be showered in God’s grace. In the middle of singing for 30 minutes, the lyrics struck a cord with my soul. Usually stoic and reserved, especially the older I get, the Holy Spirit moved me to tears. Lifting my hands up toward heaven, I sensed my disappointment, stress and worries being washed away, swept clean by the power of grace.
If you’ve been touched by God, please share your story in the comment section below.
by Jay Mankus