Tuesday, May 09, 2006

GRACE IN A CARAFE

I realized today that I have a problem with Grace. I have a problem with it because I can't seem to manage it well in my own life. I know God loves me no matter what (thus the Grace of God)... it's just that if I accept this, I feel some free reign to just do whatever I want and I get lax about sin. But, if I don't accept his Grace, I find myself in a futile fundamentalist attempt to try and prove my love to God- which always results in utter failure.

This morning I read two things:

1. The passage in the Bible where Jesus tells Simon, after fishing all night, to go fishing again Jesus and to throw the nets down for a catch. Simon reluctantly agrees. He's tired. He's worked hard to prove his might as a fisherman and has come up empty handed. Now after he obeys, he sees God bless him immensely on the one hand and standing next to Jesus, the Son of God, he feels small and ungodly. So he says: "Go away from me Jesus, for I am a sinful man." Simon isn't any more comfortable with grace than I am. He knows he doesn't deserve this, so he tells Jesus to go away. Grace makes us feel dirty before it makes us feel clean.... and it I want to push it away, looking for another way to get clean.

2. A chapter from Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. Surprise surpise. The chapter was also on grace. His conclusion is worth stewing on for days: "In exchange for our humility and willingless to accept the charity of God, we are given a Kingdom. And a begger's kingdom is better than a proud man's delusion." I read that like 10 times today. I still think it's deeper than my temporal brain will travel.

Anyway- as I thought more on grace. I saw my new coffee pot.

I got it because my old one shattered when I dropped the carafe and it was too old to justify trying to fix it. So, my lovely wife bought me a new one. She gave it to me. For free for my birthday.



That's like grace. Something is broken, it needs fixing. Rather than try to fix what is broken beyond repair, we just start over. In the case of grace and my coffee pot, you start over with something way better than you deserve and exceedingly more impressive than the pathetic thing I left behind.

My new coffee pot of grace is cool, cuz you can put coffee in it in the morning, and all by itself, it stays hot all day without any heating pad. However... it's like grace that way for me too. It stays hot for a day. After a convicting talk at church.. I'm hot for a day. After a particularly high moment in my spiritual life or some grand moment.. I stay hot for Jesus for a day. But, I need to make a new pot the next day or nuke the old stuff or something... cuz it's gone cold. Thus, the saga of grace for me. I am ready to live in it for a day. Then I jack it all up.

I am not holy enough to not need it.

I am not holy enough to not abuse it.

I am positive that I'll spend the rest of my life trying to understand, embrace, and honor it.

1 comments:

christina 10:28 PM  

the whole every day thing reminds me of this quote i saw the other day. i like it...

People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.

maybe you can re-word it for grace. anyways... love you can't wait to you you all so soon!

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Husband. Dad. Jesus Follower. Friend. Learner. Athlete. Soccer coach. Reader. Builder. Dreamer. Pastor. Communicator. Knucklehead.

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