Sensible Grace

Sensible Grace

Here are just a few thoughts that are rattling around my brain.  Not sure I have them all worked out yet but maybe if they start to rattle around in your brain we may be able to come to some conclusions.  Is there such a thing as “sensible grace”?  Grace that someone does not deserve but is not so over the top to reward them too much?  Maybe a better term would be measured grace.  Someone does us wrong and apologizes and so we want to be gracious to them but not too gracious so that they think they are being rewarded for the wrong they did us.  So we want to measure out our grace to them.  Someone else treats us in a manner that we do not appreciate but we know we should be gracious but we only want to be just so gracious.  I mean, we need to be gracious but we must be careful not to be a pushover or we do not want to communicate that what they did, even if they asked forgiveness, was ok to do.  After all, actions should have consequences.

I wonder, when we begin to think we need to have sensible or measured grace, if we have ceased to speak about grace?  Isn’t it something else then?  When we believe we must measure our response, it is not grace or mercy, but just a limited form of punishment.  I suppose we could say that we are being gracious by not putting the full weight of punishment on someone but is that really grace?  I am not sure.  It seems to me that when we limit the amount of grace that we believe we must show then we are failing to fully appreciate the amount of grace God has bestowed upon us.  When we limit the amount of grace that we give to someone, I find, that we are concentrating way more on what we are holding back or what the results of grace may be, than on the joy of giving grace.

I also find that when we go way over the top, we are also not talking about grace.  We might want to win approval from someone, or maybe we want to look good to others, or maybe we just want to make ourselves feel good.  That, too, is not the grace God gives to us.  That kind of grace usually does not result in glory given to God and it does not bless the other person.

Giving grace is a God given gift to us.  We give grace to others from the grace God has given to us.  His grace is always extravagant and always brings him glory.  Our flawed attempts at giving grace to others is complicated by our sinful nature and lack of omniscience.  I am so glad that we can rest assured that when we seek to glorify him, God takes our flawed attempts and uses them for his glory.

These are just some of the weird thoughts floating around in my feeble mind.  Let me know what you come up with.

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