What’s going on everyone!! This week, I just want us all to breathe. Show yourself some grace. That’s what I’m having to tell myself, because when I fail or mess up at something, I’m pretty hard on myself. I’m learning about myself that sometimes, positive feedback works a lot better than negative feedback. That means that when I mess up, it can be more effective to tell myself that ‘yeah I messed up, but I have another opportunity to do better based on what I learned’. I just feel like people need to hear that: show yourself some grace. Hold yourself and others accountable, but also show grace.
I was talking with a friend of mine the other day, and a story in Luke 13 came up. In this story, a man planted a fig tree in his yard. He would always check back over and over to see if it would bear fruit, but it wouldn’t have anything on it. The man tells his gardener to just cut down the fig tree because it’s not showing the fruit he is expecting. The gardener tells the man to give the plant one more chance. The gardener says that he will give it special attention for a year, and if it does not show any growth after that, then he will cut it down. What a picture of grace this is!!
This story represents a lot of things, so stay with me. We are like the fig tree. Sometimes, we mess up in our walk with God. We don’t show the fruit that we expect. God being the way He is, “He delights in the growth and prosperity of His children” (Psalm 35:27). God represents the gardener. He’s giving us grace that when we lack the fruit to tend to us and to continually help us to bear fruit.
Don’t get it twisted though. Just because grace is abundantly available, that doesn’t mean we can abuse it. We can’t live in just anyway abuse grace that way. When you experience Christ, it breathes a heartfelt experience which causes a lifestyle of gratitude for what has been done for us. With grace comes accountability.
The grace of God is a beautiful gift we have been given. When we mess up, we can boldly run to our Father, and He is willing to forgive us. That’s the beauty of the gospel. We deserve death because of our sin, but Jesus came to atone for our sin and to keep us from the punishment we deserve. That’s the picture of grace.