10-07-07

When a person truly comes in contact with God, they change.  It is not possible for a finite and flawed individual to truly taste of God’s mercy and grace and not be changed.  Yet sometimes we forget just what that change should look like.  As Paul writes his young disciple Titus, he clarifies what that changed life should look like:  Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men (Titus 3:1-2 NKJV).
A life changed by grace is one that learns the role of authority and the importance of submitting to authority.  It is not a life of rebellion, but a life that is learning to obey and to be ready to do good works.  The life changed by grace is a life that learns to get along with others and to speak well of others instead of slandering or mocking them.  The life of grace is one characterized as “peaceable”, or literally, “not picking a fight”.  Grace is not about winning the argument; it’s about loving the individual.  The life of grace is one that is “gentle”, a word that speaks of treating people fairly or evenly.  The life of grace is one that shows “humility” to everyone.  Here the idea of humility is the kind of attitude that responds to each situation with gentleness, no matter what happens or how uncomfortable that may be.

Beloved, may our lives be characterized by grace.  May we be reminded over and over that God has shown us so much mercy that it has changed us.  May our relationships be marked not by how much we try to “fix” each other, but by how much we have been changed by grace.