Discover more from ArtTalk
The Radical, Unending, Inescapable Grace of God
Life is ambiguous. There are loose ends. It takes maturity to live with the ambiguity and the chaos, the absurdity and the untidiness. If we refuse to live with it, we exclude something, and what we exclude may very well be the essential and dear- the hazards of faith, the mysteries of God. - Eugene Peterson
Everyone has something that keeps them up at night. For me? It’s the radical, unending, inescapable grace of God.
Whenever I attempt to see where the abyss of God’s grace ends, I’m quickly reminded that it doesn’t- there is no way out; I am immersed. Going into 2023, I set my goals and resolutions, mapping out how I will work harder or try better. All to become more like Christ and be a better human being. But do not my efforts always end in vain? The goals are not met, the resolutions are broken, and I am left with my inability. So what now am I left with? The grace of God. I wouldn’t say it is tough to accept this marvelous gift, not because God makes it hard to receive, but because I know God asks for something in return. God asks for all of me. A life for a life. How can I thrive in the light and life of Christ without also dying with Him? So yes, I accept the grace of God, but I also respond to God’s call for me to extend grace to others. To those who have wronged me and continue to do so, to those who have hurt me and don’t mean to. To those who remind me of myself and to those who don’t. Grace on grace on grace.
Why do we consistently try to understand the limitations of his grace? We try to narrow down the moment where someone becomes beyond repair, or the moment when it’s acceptable to cut off a person from our lives, the moment to punish, to discipline. We decide that to give grace unendingly is simply enabling. I’ve written about this before, yet in this new year, I am still unable to shake it. Perhaps this is one of my biggest struggles. And yet God never asks me to worry about these things. Do you know why? It’s because, in my concern of where my grace for others should end, I am revealing my deepest fear: that there is an end, a limit to the grace of God.
I’ve decided that there may be an end, a limit. I also have resigned to the reality that we will never know for sure until we meet this God, the ruler of the universe. So yes, I will work hard in 2023 to accomplish all that I want to accomplish, but in 2023 I will also rest deeply in God’s grace, knowing that in this rest, I am accomplishing more than I could ever imagine. I invite you to do the same.