Grace Is Needed Now More Than Ever
“God gives us even more grace, as the Scripture says, ‘God is against the proud, but he gives grace to the humble.’” James 4:6 (NCV)
To make it through the extraordinary crisis of a pandemic and social unrest, you need to treat yourself and other people the way God treats you: with grace, mercy, and forgiveness.
Grace means that God always gives you what you need, not what you deserve. If you got what you deserved, you wouldn't even be here. “God gives us even more grace, as the Scripture says, ‘God is against the proud, but he gives grace to the humble’” (James 4:6 NCV).
God opposes the prideful and arrogant because they think they can do it all by themselves, apart from God. They don't think they need God or his grace. They approach life—even life in turmoil—with the mindset, “If it's to be, it's up to me.”
But when you’re humble and admit that you can’t make it through this situation on your own, God opens the floodgates of heaven. He pours out his grace. And he expects those who have been shown amazing grace to then show that grace to others.
Everybody’s having a tough time right now. To maintain your emotional health, you need to cut yourself some slack and do the same for others. Everybody's feeling the stress, particularly the millions of people who are out of work and concerned about the future—maybe even about how they will make it to the next day. Be kind. Be gentle. Even the hardest people to love are fighting some kind of battle right now and need your grace.
This will often take a lot of humility. With tensions high, it’s easier right now to return wrong for wrong, give a sharp answer, withhold the benefit of the doubt, and speak before listening.
Your neighbor needs your grace. Your children need your grace. The person you disagree with politically needs your grace. The world is on the defense, and there is nothing that will disarm people more than being given unexpected grace.
God has given you great grace. Go and extend that grace to others so they get a glimpse of what Jesus has done for them.
Talk It Over
A lot of the conversations you need to have right now focus on sensitive topics. How do humility and grace make those conversations more productive?
Why is grace so unexpected for most people?
What is one area of your life where you need to show more grace? Take time right now to ask God to remind you of his grace so that you can more readily show it to others.
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This devotional © 2020 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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