Grace. Revisited.

Small-grace-for-allImage via WikipediaThe first part of this week I posted and entry called, "Have A Nice Ride: A Story of a Bike Ride, A Big Dog, and Grace."   The Cliff-Notes Version of the story is as follows:

  • I was going out for a bike ride
  • A big dog who had chased folks in the neighborhood before now chased me
  • I was furious and scared and yelled at the dog and told the woman at the home that the dog "better be tied up or someone's gonna' do it for him"
  • I was surprised at the level of my anger
  • The woman apologized and said, "Have a nice ride" when I was in no mood to receive a kind word
  • I actually did have a nice ride, but it took me 20 miles to calm down enough to appreciate her words of grace when I wasn't ready to accept it.


Well, yesterday I saw the young woman and her children.  It's the first time I'd seen her out and about and I had been watching for her.  I wanted to tell her "thank you" for offering a kind word when I was too mad to even recognize the kindness she was offering.  So, I went up to her and told her that very thing.  I told her that I truly appreciated her telling me to have a nice ride and that I actually DID have a nice ride and, most importantly, how much I appreciated her offering me a word of grace when, from my anger, it was clear that it could not be received at that point.  I told her that it was a good lesson for me and that she provided me a great sermon illustration about offering grace to those who won't be able to offer it back.

She apologized for the dog.

We made small talk about other things.

We talked about our kids.

It was humbling.

What a difference 10 days and no dog nipping at my heels makes.

I was glad I was able to share with her.

It was the following quote I found tonight that made me reflect more about this incident:

“Grace is love that seeks you out when you have nothing to give in return. Grace is love coming at you that has nothing to do with you. Grace is being loved when you are unlovable.”

- Paul Zahl
"Grace is being loved when you are unlovable."  That's right.

Now comes the hard part....  Who is it in my community that I'm called to grace?
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