Amazing Grace

22 Feb

I have the honor and privilege of guest posting at Perks of Cancer today!  Florence, the blog’s author, was kind enough to ask me to share a post with her readers and I was thrilled to do so.  She was even kind of enough to write a post for us that I will be sharing with you on Friday!  Perks of Cancer is a fun blog that takes a positive and often lighthearted at the perks of having cancer.  If you stop by her blog, be sure to leave a comment for her so she will know you visited.  Thank you so much, Flo, for this opportunity!  

Yesterday, we started talking about grace.  The word grace is a big, bold word when you stop and think about it.  It has multiple meanings and can be used in a variety of ways.  But what does grace really mean and how does it apply to our lives?

grace: undeserved favor

What does grace really mean?

The word “grace” actually means a lot of things.  Miriam-Webster defines grace as “unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification.”  Huh?  I’m going to need something a little easier to digest than that.  It also states that grace is “approval or favor, an act of kindness, courtesy or clemency,” and “a charming or attractive trait, ease and suppleness of movement, or a short prayer at a meal asking a blessing or giving thanks.”
Well that covers quite a broad spectrum of meanings, doesn’t it?

Let’s go back to the unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification. That’s quite a mouthful, but what exactly does it mean?  Dictionary.com describes sanctification as “to make holy” or “to purify or free from sin.”  It also describes grace as “the freely given, unmerited favor and love of God” and “a manifestation of favor.”

Sometimes it’s easier to understand the meaning of a word by knowing other words that mean the same thing. Some synonyms for grace are forgiveness, charity, mercifulness.

Ok, that helps.  I think I have a better handle on the meaning of grace.  Taking all of this information into account, one of the definitions of grace could be the undeserved divine assistance, or favor, granted to someone in order to free him/her from sin and show him/her mercy.

I like the shorter version that I heard years ago: grace is an undeserved favor.

Ok, boys and girls, that’s it for today’s lesson.  Just kidding!  :)  Oh, you wish, right??

Do we earn grace?

No, absolutely not.  Can we earn grace?  Nope.  No way.

Ephesians 2:8-9 makes this very clear:

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.

There is nothing we can do to earn God’s grace because to earn it would mean that it is no longer grace.  That’s the whole idea behind grace – it is not earned, but granted freely to those who do not even deserve it (which would be all of us).

And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace. – Romans 11:6

We were given grace when God sent Jesus to be born to Mary and Joseph, to die a painful death on the cross, and to rise again on the 3rd day.  And God has continued to shower us with grace every day since then.

One of the greatest blessings of my cancer diagnosis is that it has made me more conscious of and caused me to look more diligently for the effects of God’s grace in my life.

I hope you’ll come back tomorrow as we finish up talking about grace and the impact it could (or should) have on the way we live and interact with others.  I’ll be doing some preaching to myself.  :)

Have a wonderful Wednesday!
♥ Rachel

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2 Responses to “Amazing Grace”

  1. Cancer Warrior February 22, 2012 at 6:16 pm #

    I will certainly be checking back to hear your comments on GRACE.
    Flo

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Amazing Grace, Part 2 « Blessings in Disguise - February 23, 2012

    […] Yesterday, we talked about the formal definitions of grace and also considered the idea of whether we have to earn grace or if it is freely given.  Thankfully, it is freely given by God.  Whew!  However, it is not always freely given by us, though, and especially by me.  That’s where we pick up with today’s discussion. […]

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