the funny thing about grace is that it really is undeserved. last year i remember struggling through this issue with a good friend of mine, who was blessed with a great show of kindness from a group of friends and strangers. he seemed to be in real anguish over receiving this gift, because he felt deep down that he and his family didn't deserve to be blessed in that kind of way - or at least that there might have been others who deserved that type of a gift even more.
isn't that funny in a strange kind of way? that people would be inclined to turn away an act of grace on the basis of who deserves what?
let me clearly say that this is not to criticize my friend's actions or attitude. i do remember being struck by the irony of the conversation/situation. little did i realize that not even a year later i would be entangled in the same contradictory line of questioning.
some of you may know that i walked away from a staff position with an incredible church ministry (check it out - www.connexuscommunity.com) in order to pursue a dream of instigating a whole other format/brand of ministry. where that left me was without any employment and us with a whole lotta bills still to pay.
but there we were, out trusting that following God out on the road is the very best place that we could be. and believing that maybe God has a vested interest in not seeing us go completely bankrupt.
well, this past weekend we received a really generous - i mean really generous (especially if you knew the backstory of the givers) - gift from some friends. our first instinct was to say - you guessed it - "we don't deserve this!".
grace can make us feel quite uncomfortable.
but we have decided to receive this gift, and not try to give it back. instead we have resolved that to be gracious in accepting the gift means that we must become people who in turn look for ways to extend grace to others. pay it forward. make sure that what comes around, goes around.
so just a warning to look out - grace may be coming (to a theatre?) near you.