Josh Medlock, Director of Student Ministries
I have heard numerous explanations of grace. Many have been helpful and well thought out. Some have not.
The hardest thing to do is explain something about faith or God to someone who doesn’t believe in either.
Try explaining grace to an atheist.
Try explaining God’s abundant and available grace to someone who has felt only pain, suffering, hatred and abuse.
As Christians we often struggle to find the right words or the right thing to do in the midst of trials and tribulations. This can be true in both our lives and the lives of those we care about.
When the darkness threatens to drown us, it is most difficult to see the light.
It is still there. It always has been. We will see it again. But that doesn’t help us when the darkness is heaviest.
We often cry out, “Where are you God? How can you let this happen to me?”
Where is the grace God offers at that moment?
Daniel Montgomery says this about grace:
“God’s love for us is shown through outrageous grace.
Outrageous grace isn’t a favor we can achieve by being good; it’s the gift we receive by being a child of God.
Outrageous grace is God’s goodness that comes looking for you when often times we have nothing but contempt, anger and doubt of God to offer in return.
It’s a farmer paying a full day’s wages to a crew of what we call ‘deadbeat’ day laborers with only a single hour punched on their time cards (Matthew 20:1-16).
It’s a man marrying an abandoned woman and then refusing to forsake his covenant with her when she turns out to be unfaithful. (Ezekiel 16:8-63; Hosea 1:1-3:5).
It’s the insanity of a shepherd who puts ninety-nine sheep at risk to rescue the single lamb that strays from the rest of the flock (Luke 15:1-7).
It’s the love of a father who hands over his finest rings and robes to a young man who has squandered his inheritance on drunken binges with his fair-weather friends (Luke 15:11-32).
It’s one-way love that calls us not because we’ve been good but because God has chosen us and made us God’s own.
And now God is chasing us to the ends of the earth to keep us as his children, and nothing will ever stop that.
But here’s what’s amazing about God’s outrageous grace: This isn’t merely what God the Father would do; it’s what God did do.
God could have chosen to save anyone, everyone, or no one from Adam’s fallen race.
But what God did was to choose a multi-hued multitude of ‘someones,’ and – whether you are drowning in the darkness or basking in the light – one of those “someones” is you.
God in Christ has declared, ‘I could have chosen anyone in the whole world as my child, and I chose you.’
No matter what you say or do, neither my love nor my choice will ever change.”
That’s grace that’s truly amazing.”
I can’t really explain how amazing and outrageous God’s grace is any better than Daniel Montgomery did.
I still struggle to explain grace to people. Christians, non-Christians, adults, teens, children … grace is difficult to explain, especially when you are “going through it.” (A phrase I hear a lot with our youth).
But I do know this. God’s outrageous grace is real. God’s love is overwhelming.
I will keep looking for a good way to explain grace to people.
In the meantime, know that God’s outrageous grace is yours. Reach out and claim it.