Romans 5:20, "But where sin increased, grace increased all the more..."
I am grateful for grace. Not only the grace that is applied to my life daily, in that His mercies are renewed every morning. But also for the grace to apply grace.
What does that mean, exactly? When my husband and I were training to counsel young couples, one of the things we learned was, "when in doubt, apply grace."
Something else I've learned in my short unimportant life is this: hurting people say hurtful things. Often, the people who are the rudest, have the shortest tempers, say the most hurtful things are really the ones who are hurting the deepest.
I must admit, my heart is prone to retaliation. I want to throw hurtful words back at those who say hurtful things to me. I want to point out faults and I want to have the last word.
But those behaviors don't exhibit grace. Sometimes we have to choose grace. We have to choose grace over resentment. We choose forgiveness over hurt. We choose peace over pain.
Sometimes exhibiting grace means that we leave a situation alone instead of adding fuel to the fire. Sometimes being silent, staying quiet, refraining from speaking is applying grace. Proverbs 29:11 gives us good advice. "A fool uttereth all his mind; but a wise man keepeth it until afterward." Beth Moore once said, "Having the last word doesn't make you right. It just makes you last."
In my own life, today has been difficult. I wanted to retaliate. I wanted to spout off. I wanted to be a fool and utter all of my mind. But I will use wisdom and keep it to myself. Today, sin increased...but today grace will increase all the more.
Only By His Grace,