How grace-filled is different from graceful
When I think of someone who is graceful, I think of a ballerina or a dancer who moves in fluid, smooth lines. I think of someone who seems to float more than walk. That person is not me. Not at all! And that’s not what this site is about. I’m talking about grace-filled lives. Grace-filled families. Grace-filled women. A grace-filled me!
A grace-filled person is someone who is so full of God’s love that they stop before they react out of anger to assess the situation and see if the person or situation is one that needs grace more than it needs anger.
And a grace-filled parent is one who resists the temptation to yell or say mean things after her children misbehave when she realizes they are having a legitimately bad day. While she doesn’t let her children get away with bad behavior, she disciplines them with grace and addresses what the actual problem is instead.
THAT person is who I want to be. (Honestly, I wouldn’t mind being more graceful either because I am quite a clutz! But, I digress…) I know I can’t do it on my own. It goes against my human nature. My human nature wants to say mean things, raise my voice or slam a door shut. My human nature doesn’t want to extend grace, because I deserve justice. I deserve revenge.
But, I don’t. I don’t deserve justice or revenge. I deserve severe punishment, because I mess up over and over again. However, I serve a God filled with grace and mercy. I serve a God who sees the inside of me and why I’m misbehaving. I serve a God who stills loves me in spite of it all. In fact, He loves me so much that He sent His Son to die for me. Talk about grace!
So to be a grace-filled person, I’ve got to fight that human nature. The best way I know to fight it is to let more of God into me. My goal is to be more Christlike. And being more Christlike means keeping my focus on God. When I do that, I am more likely to let more of Him show through me. If I think of Jesus sitting beside me while I’m dealing with my children, I am more likely to act in a way that honors Him and helps them.
I am not saying that my children don’t need disciplined, because they do. God doesn’t give me grace and mercy and just let me have at life my way. He disciplines me. Sometimes it hurts, but every time I grow from it and learn another lesson and more about God. Every single time! That’s what I want to model for my children. I want to discipline them so they can grow up to be awesome people. I want to discipline them so they understand the right way to behave and treat others. And I want to discipline them so they are safe. But I don’t want to utterly crush them. I don’t want to respond only out of anger. I want to show them grace and discipline as God has shown me.
In the end, I want to be intentional about how I’m living my life and raising my children so that we are a Family with Grace. I don’t care if we are a family who is graceful, but I definitely want to be one who is grace-filled!