The following is Kendal’s beautiful response to Mark’s thought from earlier this week, entitled “Grace.” If you want to read it again, it is posted beneath Kendal’s response for your review.
“I love this definition of grace! It freshly captures the ageless truth that we were chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world to BE holy & blameless before Him in love.
How absurd to think God would give Himself to redeem us (who’ve been us created in His image), while harboring the attitude, “You don’t deserve my favor”. What charming Lover would shower His espoused with that insinuation? Would He who cautions against being unequally yoked, patiently court an unholy bride? Or what loving Father would so judge His son or daughter as unworthy of his kind endowments?
In Christ we are holy. The Lamb slain from the foundation has thoroughly cleansed us to now BE His favor in the earth. May we see ourselves as the apple of His eye, restored by His affection, not undeserving worms, still guilty of sneaking forbidden fruit.
Keep preaching love, it never fails.”
Mark’s original post:
So much attention is being paid to this word. It has become a lightning rod in the church much like the Holy Spirit in the recent past.
With all of the flowery definitions and colorful discussions out there concerning grace, it is rare that the actual definition of the word is the subject.
Grace: Gk, charis: graciousness; the divine influence upon the heart and its reflection in life.
The core Greek word means cheer. Put these together and we have a real, meaningful, definition of grace.
Grace is the joy of the Lord, directed toward us, changing us to reflect Him, be Him.
First, we realize He is cheerful toward man. He loves people. He really does. He is happy they exist and they are the treasure of His heart.
It is with this happy attitude that he approaches us. His kindness, His goodness leading us to repentance.
Next, He loves us so much that He gives us Himself. First as our bridegroom in Jesus and then as our intimate helper in the Holy Spirit. Only a Father loves enough to offer us these.
His person influencing our heart, effects a change. That change is the reflection of Himself – the Lord in flesh.
The sole purpose for grace is to display the Lord in humanity.
Jesus IS grace. He was the first to manifest the Lord in human form – When you have seen me, you’ve seen the Father. We now carry that same honor, potential.
Grace is the interwoven fabric of divinity with humanity. The fullness of why man was created – Oneness with the Lord. What Adam had and lost. What Jesus regained.
Personally, it is why I disagree with the conventional definition of grace – unmerited favor. It lacks the power and fullness of the Lord Himself.
To boot, this grace, this God, was always meant to be with man.
It is not undeserved. It is what, Who, we were always meant to have.
We are encouraged to eat and drink Him. To taste and see that the Lord is good. What we ingest becomes a part of us.
And by so doing, we take in the living God. This is His holy trap. Because He knows that you don’t really swallow infinity. He swallows you.
Receive grace, real grace. And allow Him to be Himself in you.