I have been thinking about something a great deal over the last several weeks. What I have been thinking about is grace…or more specifically, the lack of grace in culture today.
As I have been reading through various social media pages, listening to the news, and ultimately listening to people, in all of their various rants, I am coming to understand that there is a terrible lack of grace in the world.
There have been all manners of issues about which I have seen people (both Christians and secular) rant. I have witnessed people (yes Christians as well) attack one another and pronounce judgement on others whose political views differ from their own. People have ranted about immigration and walls, welfare, killing a gorilla, bathroom usage, a statue, and so many other things.
It has occurred to me that, behind all of the rhetoric and posturing, is a prideful need to be right. In the greatest majority of all of the inflammatory language is the unspoken position that “I am right, you are wrong…” The willingness to call for unrealistic punishment and even issue death threats is incredibly saddening to me. It is terribly upsetting to me that those who claim the name of Jesus Christ often lead the chants for retribution and the harshest punishment. It is an indictment against us that our first response to the world, to those who disagree with us, to those who are different from us is anger, is hate rhetoric, and is violence.
It seems to me that such is contrary to the gospel of Jesus Christ, and the great grace we ourselves have been extended. In Matthew 20, the Parable of the Workers, Jesus teaches us that God will extend grace as he sees fit, not in proportion to our work, or to our worth, but as HE sees fit. Paul, in II Corinthians 8.7 prays this for the Corinthian Christians, “But just as you abound in everything, in faith, in utterance and knowledge and in all earnestness and in the love we inspired in you, see that you abound in this gracious work also…” The call is to extend God’s grace to all, enemies as well as friend. We are called to extend grace in the same measure we have received it to those who disagree with us as well as those who agree. We are called to be Jesus to those who would spit in our face as well as those we love.
I am thinking, if we would be salt and light in the world today, we must put away our gracelessness and embrace the grace-giving character of Jesus Christ…
Just my thoughts today…