Today I am revisiting a blog post that I wrote several years ago. My reason for revisiting it is because I found out something about someone this weekend that rocked my world. Someone that I considered a friend many years ago, someone that I still maintain contact with on social media and at Christmas, someone I respected. Someone that did some pretty horrific things. I am having a really hard time navigating through the new knowledge about this person and needed to focus on grace. I wrote this blog post after hearing a sermon 3 years ago and I needed to read it again. And again. I am not there yet. It’s going to probably take me some time but maybe it will resonate with you as well.
Grace isn’t fair.
Have you ever thought about that?
At church this past Sunday the message was about grace.
I sat and listened and I guess I needed to hear this message because several things stuck with me.
First of all, grace is not fair.
Now that is not a bad thing even though it sounds bad.
The scripture selection was from Matthew 20: 1-16. You can click here to read that passage if you wish.
The text of this selection relates the story about a vineyard and the owner and laborers. The short simplified version is that the laborers who worked just part of the day got the same wage as those that worked the entire day. The laborers that were there all day said it wasn’t “fair”. The owner reminded them that they agreed to work for that rate so they had nothing to whine about. It wasn’t an act of injustice – it was more like an act of mercy to those who came late in the day to work.
The pastor went on to relate a story about Jeffrey Dahmer who was a serial killer and sex offender. He revealed that just a couple of months before he was brutally killed by another inmate in prison he became a Christian. God’s grace became his salvation and he was forgiven for his horrific crimes. Our pastor, as well as many others including Max Lucado from whose book he had used for part of his sermon, admitted that he had a difficult time with that.
Why should a man who led a despicable and deviant life be allowed to have the same “privileges” as the woman who sat next to me in the church pew?
Because of grace. Plain and simple.
Grace is not fair. It does not matter what went before. It simply does not matter.
Grace is the free and unmerited favor of God.
I can do absolutely nothing to win God’s grace. It is mine just by believing.
If I am to be living out my life in the way that God asks me to I need to be able to accept that each and every person, no matter how they may appear to be in my own eyes, has the same access to that grace as I have.
That is what hit me.
We are all unworthy and yet….God’s grace is what is freely given for each one of us if we choose to accept it.
I think I needed to hear about the extravagant and outrageous grace that God offers to ALL this week. As for my friend – I am praying.
13 CommentsLeave a comment
This is a tough one but a good reminder. Thanks. xo
Sending love to you, Darlene! 🙂
Sorry that you are dealing with shock and upset feelings. Your situation is so sad and troubling. And yep, we are all sinners in need of a savior. Thatnknfor a good post.
I am reminded today of how much we do need that Savior in our lives. What would I do without my faith? Honestly I don’t know. Thanks for your sweet words of support. I just keep praying and praying.
There by the grace of God go I
I’m sorry, Beth Ann. It’s always hard to learn something horrific about someone you liked and trusted. I hope you can build those feelings again, and I hope the other person works hard to earn your respect again too.
Thanks so much, Dawn. Your words are so kind and while this issue is not all about me I am having to figure out how to deal with the news. I think it was the shock of it all and trying to figure out how to get past that . Or something. Thanks for stopping by.
Just like the thief on the cross, God’s grace can be given to all who ask for it. But oh for us, in our humanity, it is difficult to extend it to one who does unspeakable wrongs. I’m still working on that one too.
Thanks for your words, Cindy. Yes, it is so very difficult and I am praying that those involved can also come to some sort of peace in it all. Prayer is definitely the answer.
Only Grace can lead us to forgive when we cannot understand. I will pray for you.
Thanks so much for your comment. As you can tell I am struggling – not so much for me but for others involved. Prayers definitely needed.
This is a very difficult situation for anyone. I am so sorry this had to happen to a sweet & caring person like yourself. When someone turns out to not be the person you thought it causes the heart pain. Pain that we can not always figure out. Continue to pray that our Lord will show you how to heal from this. Somethings in this life we are just not suppose to understand or forget but to forgive. I pray you heal is soon. <3