Grace

Grace abounds in my life.  Everywhere.  It fills up my heart, spills over into the depths of my soul, and washes me through and through.  For as long as I can remember, I have sensed its presence – have always known that I live and move and have my being in a cloud of inexplicable goodness.  And that it has nothing to do with me.  Or I have nothing to do with it.  That it is there.  Always.
I’m watching a slide show flash across my computer screen and the grace keeps washing over me in waves and waves of goodness.  A life of sweet, faithful, undeserved love.  And I can’t breathe because it’s all so good.
On Tuesday, Emily asked us to post our snapshots of grace. There are so many…it was hard to choose.
I could’ve chosen one from my wedding day.
Grace.
Or of the moment they laid my sweet baby girl on my chest for the first time.
Grace upon grace.
Or of my high school and college years when I was lapping it up and rolling around in it –
Grace I hadn’t even begun to comprehend.
But in the end, I chose a picture of family.

 

Truth is, I have quite a few of these comin’ at my from every branch of the family tree.

 

With different people but the same message.

 

Grace.
These pictures, they are beautiful.  They are fun.  It looks like the people in them are carefree and crazy about each other all the time.  The truth is that there is a great deal of humanity represented in each picture.  Mistakes made.  Harsh words spoken.  Selfishness wallowed in.  That’s why the smiles and the silliness are so beautiful.  Becuase grace covers it all.  Every.  Last.  Bit.

Sweet grace.

That stitches together the moments of brokenness and of rejoicing, the mistakes and the triumphs, the funerals and the birthdays, the harsh and the gentle, the passionate and the logical, the miscommunications and the choruses of laughter, the old and the young.  Grace.  That loves above and around and between the selfishness and the smelliness and the silliness.  Grace. That I have tried to put into words on a few occassions…

The unconditional love that radiates from this family is powerful and moving.  I have been left speechless time and again as I have watched you do life together, do life with me.  Always, in the days leading up to time spent with you, I am filled with excitement and happiness because I know that wherever you are gathered, there will be love.  There will not be perfect cicumstances.  There will not be perfect choices.  There will not be perfect people.  But there will be love…unconditional, uplifting, life-giving love.  So, during this Thanksgiving, I want you to know that I am thankful for you.  Thank you for showing me what real love looks like.

but always seem to come up short…

Well, here I sit, the end of Thanksgiving Day, and I am overwhelmed with how blessed I am.  I am sitting in a mountain lodge in Branson, Missouri, watching the entirety of my extended family play a game of hearts.  My cousin just flashed one of her shy, irresistible looks at me…as if to say, “You know I’m cute…love me”…and I do.  I love them all.  Just to be with them, to be in a house full of about 30 people, all who share an unconditional love for one another, is a powerful experience.  It doesn’t get much better than that. 

Because it’s beyond any of us.  Words cannot draw lines around it or appropriately highlight its hues of stirred hearts and inexplicable love.  I can never quite wrap it all up because it’s all only a shadow of True Grace.

 It is in Him that we live and move and have our being.

*Linking up with Chatting at the Sky today.

3 thoughts on “Grace

  1. You are indeed so very blessed. I have dreamed of family gatherings like the one you describe. They don't happen quite that way for us, but still, i'm thankful for the reminder from you to embrace the grace I have been shown and given. So good.

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