I find myself grasping for more grace these days, wanting to be filled so I might be emptied, again.
and…I reach…I reach out with my feeble hands and I attempt to unearth what grace is, what it does.
I take my seat at the head of the table in my classroom and I relish the feeling, the honor of being able to teach, the honor of being able to plant seeds.
and the meaning of grace falls from my tongue.
grace, it gives people the benefit of the doubt.
grace, is an open heart, an open door.
but grace, is often misused and misplaced.
and I find myself reaching and reeling, longing that my every student might know, might truly experience grace: the grace that understands the unfathomable, the grace that welcomes the weary, the grace that says nothing, when nothing is needed to be said.
I struggle. I struggle, because I know I can’t fix what is broken.
I can’t reach deep into hurting souls and turn on the light to wash away the darkness.
I can’t always have the words to bandage the heartbroken, the salve to lessen the scars.
but I don’t think grace focuses on what cannot be done.
i think grace is always enough.
i think grace is always overcoming.
i think grace is always forgiving.
i think grace is always grasping.
I think grace is beautiful and it leaves me in awe, because grace is what brought me here. You see, I, I was just an innocent girl with a crazy dream. I was just one of those that rarely attempted to be someone else, to do something more, to speak when it wasn’t required was something I all, but avoided.
I hid in the face of confrontation.
I hid behind the pages of my books.
I hid from pain and from heartache, but it eventually found me.
and well, grace found me, too.
It found me battered, bruised, and left-behind. It found me on my knees. Grace found me when I least expected that any hope could be left for me…because I started looking for grace and love in all the wrong places, in all of the wrong people.
I found myself stretching to please those around me. I found myself opening the forbidden doors of the past, just because I thought I needed to be loved by a boy, and not by God, alone.
I started quietly, fiercely demanding that a boy’s over-promised love would finally be for me, that I might have a hand to hold, but this demand ended in torrents of tears for years. It ended, just as it begun, empty hands and a failing heart, but you see, my reaction and the common response to my hurt is always claiming that Jesus had something to do with it and that He caused my pain.
But I knew all along, that grace and love couldn’t be found in a boy. I knew my expectations were far off; I knew I was leaving God out of the picture. I was telling God what I wanted, what I thought I deserved.
but grace. But grace looks at these failures, and says “oh, child, you walked right into heartache, what you thought to be enough, was just a way of settling, barely getting by.” Grace looks at the homes we build, the shortcuts we take, and grace whispers, “oh child, will you just put down your tools, will you just sit down with me and trust that I have complete control.”
and grace, it’s enough.
And everyday I get the chance to tell my story and miraculously God uses the heartache, he uses the past pain and he accomplishes something. He accomplishes something beautiful, because unlike the people our hearts long to please…grace never returns empty.
So let grace find you, today, you, wherever you are; whatever you are standing in. Let grace find you and let grace heal you. Let it fill you. Wrap your empty hands around grace and refuse to define life by what you cannot do, but rather seek out what you can do and give grace.
Make it a point to realize the house you are building for yourself, the people you are pleasing are just ways of settling and dear child, you are one step from breaking into a million pieces, God knows exactly what you need. Unclench your controlling fists and cling to grace, it’s enough.