Tuesday, November 18, 2014

grace upon grace



I have been told that I am a writer.

I started writing stories when I was ten years old—about the same time I started journaling every day, jotting down silly details about a very ordinary ten-year-old life. I’m twenty now, and every day of the past ten years has been recorded by my pen.

But you have often read my laments that I just can’t find any words. That there is nothing inside of me to say. I called it writer’s block and I called it lack of inspiration and I eventually just denied the idea that I was ever meant to be a writer.

I was quite wrong.

On Sunday, November 9, I sat in church listening to a sermon about grace. For the first few minutes I let my mind wander—I know grace, I thought smugly. I don’t need to hear this. But as Pastor Karl went on, it occurred to me that my mindset alone proved that I was indeed in desperate, dire need of grace.

Grace is called God’s indescribable gift (2 Corinthians 9:15). Grace is God’s favor toward me when I do not in any way deserve it. Grace is the Holy One letting Someone else volunteer to take my death penalty. Grace is every breath that I take and every day I wake up with health and vitality.

And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. . . . For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace.        - John 1:14, 16

And sitting there listening to Pastor Karl say again what I have heard a thousand times throughout a lifetime of churchgoing, but this time finally letting the words penetrate my hard heart, I felt again this almost foreign urge… to write.

Since then, I’ve been writing an average of two hours a day. It’s not a story, but rather an exploration of some key biblical truths about a topic I feel very strongly about: the biblical functioning of the church body. Maybe it will be a very long essay; maybe it will be a book. I don’t know. But it startles me how easily the words come when at the forefront is not a self-oriented goal to write something amazing, but a gazed fixed with awe on the nature of the God who inspires every word.

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