The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14 (NIV, emphasis mine)
Grace. It’s a word that humbles. Defined as “unmerited favor.” In my mind, I picture the prodigal son finally stumbling home, and his Father running toward him. Did a guy who had grabbed his inheritance prematurely and squandered it in spurious behaviors deserve this? A father who hiked up his robe and ran to greet him? No word of condemnation on that dad’s lips? No lecture. No reminders of how deeply the son had hurt him. Nope. Just arms clasped tightly, embracing, weeping, perhaps at the joy of it all. His son had returned at last. Parties and feasting and forgiveness without condemnation. What a picture of undeserved, unmerited, totally crazy favor. That’s grace. It’s never deserved. It’s outrageous kindness. It’s not human. We don’t often act like that.
Truth. It’s a stark word. A pure word. Defined as “in accordance with fact or reality; accurate; exact.” Truth tells it like it is. Oh, Jesus was a truth teller as well as a grace giver, wasn’t He? Remember the time he called religious leaders of his day “vipers”? Or, when He gently commented to the woman at the well that she’d had five husbands and the man she was now with wasn’t her husband at all. Just the facts. There they were. How about the time He was arrested, surrounded by soldiers, and Pilate reminds Him, “Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?” His answer, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above” (John 19:10b-11a). No cowering. No fear. Just the truth. Spoken with confidence. We don’t often act like that.
How can I learn to live a life “full of grace”?
- By believing the best about people when they’ve been unkind, offering them unmerited favor, and refusing to harbor bitter thoughts.
- By hearing an apology—and simply giving the hug without the lecture. The one apologizing knows what they’ve done; they don’t need it repeated back to them.
- By overlooking slights … the invitation that doesn’t come, the help requested that’s denied … extending kindness to those who are indifferent to my needs.
- By forgiving. Again. And again.
How can I learn to live a life that “speaks truth” unafraid?
- By not wasting opportunities to share the good news of Jesus’ great love, not hiding behind my fear that I’ll sound “strange.”
- By owning my own faults and confessing my sins, asking forgiveness when I need to.
- By sharing frankly when someone has hurt me, stating only facts with calmness and graciousness.
- By being bold with a friend who has strayed, caring more about rescuing her relationship with God than preserving her relationship with me, speaking the truth in love into her life for her best good.
Dear Lord Jesus, You are full of grace and truth. You are wise. When You walked the earth, You always knew how to speak, how to act, what to do. I am not wise. I’m often foolish, harboring hurts instead of extending grace and hiding truth under the guise of being gentle. Help me to be more like You. Teach me how to be “full of grace and truth.” In Your Name I ask this, Amen.
You are loved,
Sweet Selah Ministries
To encourage a movement away from the belief that “busy is better”
and toward the truth that stillness and knowing God matter most—
and will be reflected in more effective work and service
To offer resources and retreats that help women pause (Selah)
and love God more deeply as they know Him more intimately (Sweet)
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