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dress-up jewelry

Hey everyone! How is summer? I am decorating for my girl’s fourth birthday today! I know everyone says time flies and it definitely does! Four years ago, I was terrified to go into that hospital but relieved when it was not as bad as I thought and I totally teared up when I heard her first cry! I recommend everyone keep that recorded. It helps when the kid has a bad attitude later on. It helps me remember to extend grace!

Grace. What is it exactly? My name is Greek for grace, although I am not Greek myself. Merriam Webster defines grace as unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification, a virtue coming from God, and a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine assistance. Have you experienced grace in your life? Have you ever experienced a time you needed grace and were not given it?

When I was little, I got my fair share of spankings. Yes, fair is the important word here. One afternoon, I felt really guilty because I was told I would get a spanking and my Dad had forgotten. I went to his room to let him know I had not received it yet. He allowed me to go without it and used it as an opportunity to show me grace! Now that I look back as a mom, I might feel like extending grace too, simply out of exhaustion at the end of the day…Staying on top of children to teach them the Godly way to live is extremely tiring, right?

In twelfth grade, I arrived at school the Monday after prom and found my friend crying on the restroom. Her boyfriend had broken up with her just after prom. Despite the fact 8 a.m. came and went and I was supposed to be in Bible class, I stayed with her until she felt better. I went to class about 40 minutes late. I was a little worried since I was not the type to be tardy, but perfectly ready to accept the tardy. I went to my Bible teacher’s desk and began to explain I was in the restroom with my friend because she was crying. Before I could finish my sentence, he said, “I know, I counted you present.” I was stunned as I returned to my seat and my level of respect for him went through the roof. He cared about people just like he was teaching us in our class.

We have all had times when we have not experienced grace when we really could have benefited from it. When my husband was a student pastor, I took the three girls (three and under) to church by myself so we would not have to show up at the crack of dawn. I had the system down to a meticulous process, but we still have three girls, one could not walk at the time, three diaper bags, and my bag with my Bible and junk in it. A few Sundays I admit to parking in a handicap spot. Yes, I did. One Sunday, getting the baby out of the car, I rolled the ankle I broke two years before in my heels, and was worried about walking, carrying a baby, and four bags. I parked in that spot. Another Sunday, it was raining, so with four bags, two toddlers, and a baby, to avoid them getting soaked, as we were a super slow crew, I parked in the handicap spot. I found out later someone had taken pictures of my vehicle and reported my offense!

I sometimes jump to conclusions and lose my patience with people and expect more than maybe they can give. Truth is, we should really extend the same grace to each other that God extends to us by sending Jesus to pay the price for our sin while we were powerless and sinful (Romans 5:8) ! In reality, everyone we meet is fighting a difficult battle. It may not look like ours, but we all have stuff. Let us remember to be thankful for the grace we have received and be kind to one another (Ephesians 4:32). This “be kind to one another” is a verse I am working on with my girls the past several months. We have to incorporate it a lot as they take each other down in the playroom over a doll or piece of dress-up jewelry. Apparently a tiara is worth fighting for. They may be girls, but physical fights break out often. Have a great week! Much love to you.



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