What is grace?
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
The Ancient Romans had three different meaning for the word “gratia” from which we get our word grace. For them, gratia could mean:
- A pleasing quality: something you have or don’t have
- Favor or goodwill: something you give or get
- Gratitude or thanks: when you have something to be thankful for
God’s grace – His unmerited favor – really incorporates all of these meanings, and it gives us the foundation we need to live grace in our own lives.
- God is full of grace. (Exodus 34:6)
- God’s grace makes salvation possible. (Ephesians 1:7-8)
- God accepts us by His grace. (Ephesians 2:8-9)
- God’s grace gives us hope. (1 Peter 1:13)
How do we to live grace?
Not only do the above scripture describe our God of grace and the qualities He possesses, but they also give us direction for how we to can live grace in our own lives because of His unmerited favor. Because of God’s grace, we can:
- Accept His gift of grace. It’s a gift; you can’t earn it. This truth is essential in order to live grace.
- Be slow to anger. Learn The Logic of Patience and keep Battling the Unbelief of Impatience.
- Be abundant in loving-kindness. Deliberately look for ways to show kindness to others.
- Be abundant in truth. Take Every Thought Captive to the truth.
- Get wisdom and understanding. Learn to Develop Wisdom and focus on understanding.
- Take time to think. Develop Good Judgment that will help you think clearly.
- Develop self-control. The only way I have found to do this is by the increasing of the fruits of the Spirit in me.
At the end of Genesis 8, just after getting off of the ark after the great flood, Noah built and altar to the Lord and made a sacrifice to God. The NIV says in verse 21 that “The Lord smelled the pleasing aroma…” God then went on to promise He would never curse the earth again.
I desire for God to say that about my sacrifices, too, and I want my sacrifices to result in God’s blessings. I want my life to be a pleasing aroma to the Lord.