Perhaps, you as well have heard it said as an explanation of the word ‘grace’ that it means, God has unmerited favor and blessing, when we do not deserve it. While I believe that to be true, I also believe that there is much more to the word grace than that. In my opinion, grace is everything the Jesus is to us in our times of need…His power, mercy and love…all we need to see us through whatever situations we may be facing.
No doubt, like you in your own personal times of trials, temptations, and afflictions, I as well can testify that the grace God has supplied and been enough to see me through each and every trial. A couple of examples, it was not that many years ago when Jeannie was diagnosed with severe, rheumatoid arthritis. A future, the specialist said, of her fighting “a long hard, rest of your life battle,” was what to us was a nightmare. With what had been up that point a vibrant, strong, healthy, middle-age lady, the ‘future’ of having to take cancer drugs to combat the pain, was not what we had been expecting. ‘If it were not for God’s grace’ and healing power of Jesus, that, would have been her future days!
Then as I shared last week, while Jeannie was in No CA to spend a ‘one-time-in-the year’ week with some of our kids and grandkids, her days were shortened as she rushed back to Arizona to be with me following my heart attack. I decided to take a one day to visit a place we had been many numerous times over the past 40 years. Lake Havasu City, AZ, with its gorgeous miles and miles of waterways, many of our kids had grown up skiing and wake boarding on the lake. With her away it ‘seemed to be’ (have you had ‘seemed to be moments’) a good time to visit some boat shops, and to walk along the shores of Lake Havasu. My plan was soon interrupted as this severe ‘heart disruption’ put me in the hospital for the next four-days! As I opened my eyes in the emergency room, I saw the loving face of Jeannie, as well as CRA’s leaders. ‘If it were not for God’s grace’, that, no doubt could have easily been a time that I would have never experienced my birthday just a few days after.
As we look back on the years of trials, temptations, physical attacks on the road, hundreds of thousands of miles driven, driving a motorcoach, pulling an enclosed car hauler, all measuring 70 feet, 8 inches, crisscrossing on highways that run West to East, and North to South …. Thankfully with not even a ticket! …with all those miles …. I can only say, ‘if it were not for God’s grace’.
I still ask why, yet it all remains a mystery, other than ‘His grace has always brought us through’, and that’s enough reason for me to give Him all my thanks! Even when there have been attacks of slander by rumors, other times being falsely accused, and at times even being rejected by friends, I can say, ‘if it were not for God’s grace’! Can you say Amen?
For anyone of us, we may never understand the pain we endure at times, the discomfort in this life, and we may never know why some of our prayers go unanswered as we think they should be answered, yet we find God’s mercy and grace to help us in our time of need. Isn’t that exactly what the writer of the book of Hebrews penned in Hebrews 4:16 when he wrote, “Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
Someday, sooner than most of us think, our Heavenly Father will reveal to us the beautiful plan He had all along. I believe He will show us how it was His strength that turned our weakness into strength; thereby enabling us the ability to maneuver through the trials and temptations. Ultimately, that all-in-all it would be for the furtherance of using those events of life to help make us more like Jesus! All this taking place … for one reason, ‘If It Were Not For God’s Grace’.
Blessings, Psalm 20:7 Dale & Jeannie