Modeling

Funny how we all ‘see’ things differently – especially those under five. Grown-ups see from experience. Little ones, with a mere few years, tend to be more literal and view life and circumstances only from a concrete view.

Recently cousins 2, 3, and 5 years old spent some time together. Oldest does get that hitting hurts – youngest no clue that crashing his car into his cousin brings tears. But what I’ve observed is: a lot is expected the older you get – but not a lot of grace is given when considering five years doesn’t add up to a whole lot of experience.

I’ve also observed that even when we do get bigger, grace given to another is often a foreign concept. We seem to expect everyone to act and think like we do. And when they don’t, they’re wrong – we’re right. Yet only one person has ever lived who has the right to expect we should act and think like they do. And Jesus was the biggest grace-giver of all. “From His fullness we have all received grace upon grace.” (John 1:16 BSB)

Perhaps grace is a concept so lost today, it is why we find ourselves with all the heartaches and woes going on in our world. Maybe it should be revived. Perhaps we should begin to model it for our children, spouses, friends, co-workers, those who cut us off driving, those who say bad things about us, those who wrong us.

Why not? Isn’t that what Jesus did? When mocked, beaten, crucified: “Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.’ ” (Luke 22:34a NIV)

Hmm, a whole lot easier said than done. Time to admit we all have a long way to go with living out grace. Yes, we are a life-long work in progress. But progress pleases God. He’s given us ultimate grace: complete forgiveness for every shortcoming, every sinful act.

Here’s why God sent Messiah to us: “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.” (John 3:17 CSB) During His three years of ministry more souls were saved by grace than by any miracle witnessed. And in the centuries since, every follower is amazed by grace, for we all know what our hearts are capable of.

“God saved you by His grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.” (Ephesians 2:8 NLT) If we model it for all to see, perhaps there will be a little less strife in our days and a few more who want to know Christ.

14 Comments on “Modeling

  1. This is a profound observation, Paris, “I’ve observed – a lot is expected the older you get – but not a lot of grace is given when considering…years doesn’t add up to a whole lot of experience.” Beyond a five-year-old, it can be applied to a new believer, a person facing a new prognosis, a new parent…your reminder to be grace-givers is a call to walk in an understanding way with those around us. Thank you for the reminder!

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    • So true, Lisa, I love that you added that experience comes with time no matter chronological age. Blessings as you grace-give…

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  2. Paris, such a beautiful reminder that we should be modeling grace for others, as the old saying goes, “more is caught than taught”. By living the truth we accomplish more for the kingdom than talking about it!

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  3. “Time to admit we all have a long way to go with living out grace.” So true. And may grow in grace and model it for our children and grandchildren, who will surely learn from what they see, hear, and experience around us.

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  4. I love the idea of modeling grace. Someone very close to me who struggles in life seldom offers grace to others yet expects a pass for herself. You have inspired me to see how I can verbally model grace. I hope you write more on this topic.

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    • We all have people close to us that require a bit more grace than we often feel we can muster up right? Praying for you, Maree… Father grace is hard for us – yet You give it in abundance. Help us in our grace-less moments to find ourselves instead letting Your grace glow out of us so that what is most needed is what we model. In Jesus’ Name Amen

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    • That is very kind of you, I really appreciate it – and, as you know, we write what we really need Him to work on in us don’t we? So glad He uses us to reach one another.

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