a word called GRACE

Driving through the city on that dismal spring day, I could feel my soul slumping like a wilted cabbage leaf.

And I didn’t like it.

A silver car bolted out in front of me in one erratic move, and I grumbled a few choice words under my breath as I slammed on the brakes.Which made my sadness even deeper.

I thought I’d left that kind of talk in my past.

The silver car putzed along ten miles below the speed limit, then, in a burst of sudden energy, repeatedly switched lanes without warning. I was very glad to be behind it.

Stopping at a red light, I rolled down my window and breathed a great lungful of the crisp air, too weary to sort out my troubled thoughts.

That’s when I saw her.

The same lady in that same silver car. She was waiting at the red light right beside me. Rolling down her window, she turned towards me, and the instant our eyes met my mind did a rapid double take. She was a senior-aged woman, dressed in the style of the upper middle-class, her makeup flawless. Only the puffy skin under her eyes and the watery reflection of pain within them gave away a reason for the desperation in her gaze. She had a crumpled piece of paper spread carefully across the steering wheel.

“Excuse me, am I on the right track to get to the L— General Hospital?” she asked, in a voice as fragile as windswept dandelion fluff.

“Yes you are, Ma’am. It is three blocks ahead on the left.”

“Oh… thank you.” the low voice replied, her tone implying total amazement to be on the right path.

“Are you sure you are ok?” I had visions of her collapsing in the driver’s seat.

“Y…es.” She glanced down at the paper. “Thank you so much.”

She soon turned onto the emergency lane, and I was left envisioning an injured grandchild, or a dying spouse. I could imagine the scene all too clearly. I know what it is like to be the person with only a message to hold onto, just waiting and thinking about all of the horrible possibilities and trying not to cry.

You know what? A very strange thing happened as I drove along. My spirit suddenly felt lighter, free.

And it was shocking when I realized why.

The woman knew how to receive grace. And she had allowed me to give it.

Yes, it may have been only the smallest possible interaction, hardly anything really. But do you know what the starting factor to receiving grace is?

ASKING.

We can feel so far from so close.

So, here is an invitation from me to you. Today, ask for grace.

From me. Because I believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that you deserve to be cared about.

From a stranger. Because by humbling yourself enough to allow him to bless you, you will heap piles of blessing on his head in return.

From God. Because His grace is free, postmarked by heaven and designed expressly for the one-of-a-kind-masterpiece of the Father–YOU!

Because I know that the peace you will receive in return will blow your mind.

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