Grace: God's "Disposition to Bless"
2 Corinthians 12:9
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.”
Christ’s power resting on me in my weakness. That is exactly what I needed. My husband was dead, my heart was broken, and there were days I wasn’t sure I would make it through. I needed God’s perfect grace.
God’s grace is so very rich and I wonder sometimes if we really comprehend how profound it is.
The original Greek word translated “grace” in 2 Corinthians 12:9 is “charis.” HELPS Word Studies defines it as “...God freely extending Himself (His favor, grace), reaching (inclining) to people because He is disposed to bless (be near) them.” Thayer's Greek Lexicon says, "the favor of Christ, assisting and strengthening his followers and ministers to bear their troubles." (A)
He is disposed to blessing us. He is inclining and reaching for us and freely extending His favor.
Psalm 23:6 tells us His “goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.” The Hebrew word translated “follow” is “radaph.” It literally means to “chase after, to pursue.” (B) God’s mercy and goodness are “chasing after us” in order to extend His grace and His blessing.
That sounds wonderful, but how do we surrender our trials and weaknesses to His grace?
For me, it was crying out to God after my husband‘s death. Crying out and telling Him I could not stay in that place of darkness and despair. I asked Him to show me what I needed to do to heal my pain. He answered; and although it wasn’t easy, I obediently followed every direction He gave.
I relinquished my firm grip on my sorrow and my ideas about grief. I relinquished all of the plans my husband and I had made for the future. I took every thought “captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5.) I took everything to Jesus... every emotion, every disappointment, every expectation, and every thought. I gave them all to Him; asking Him to replace them with His love, His peace, His strength. I rested in His grace. I found joy in the midst of the grief. I can truly say that it has been a beautiful journey.
Looking back, I realize that in the times I wondered if I would make it, I was somehow forgetting the reality of God’s perfect grace. The grace that has brought me through so many trials. When I keep my eyes focused on Jesus, the size of my trial gets lost in the size of my God.
Someone said to me shortly after my husband’s death, “God never gives you more than you can handle.” I smiled and said, “Well, that’s not true. God gives me more than I can handle every single day. However, God never gives me more than HIS GRACE can handle in my weakness.”
Heavenly Father, thank You that Your goodness and mercy continue to chase after me. Thank You that You freely extend Your favor and grace to reach me, that You incline Yourself to me because You are disposed to blessing me. Lord, may I see You with that new perspective... always through the lens of Your grace, love, and mercy. Always knowing that You never give us more than Your Grace can handle. May I be so focused on You that my trials pale in comparison. After all, You are God, the Maker of Heaven and Earth. In the precious holy name of Jesus I pray. Amen.
— Robyn Alsip Arce, © 2021
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