Extending God’s Grace
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others,
as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.
1 PETER 4:10
During our time through the valley of suffering, both Dave and I were in great need of God’s Grace and the extension of His Grace to one another. Both of us exposed our weaknesses like never before. For me it was fear and depression – for Dave it was anger.
During that season Dave aimed his anger and verbal abuse at our children and me. It was like walking on eggshells in our house. No one wanted to upset the apple cart or cross Dave in the wrong way because we knew what the result would be – an explosion of anger and rage.
Looking back I should have thought that this was not fair. Here I was – selflessly taking care of him – loving him through his pain and yet he was taking his pain out on me – I did not deserve it. But even though I hated his behavior my response was not anger at him – I felt sorry for him.
Many have asked me how I could show such compassion after the way he was treating me but the reason was that I knew his heart. I knew that he did not want to respond in that way but he could not control it. After each explosion he always expressed so much remorse.
I knew that at the root of Dave’s anger was fear, frustration and hurt. I knew that he was unable to cry to express those emotions. The only way for him to express his unrelenting pain was anger.
I also knew that I was a child of God who sins– an undeserving recipient of God’s Grace – for which I was eternally thankful. Because I knew how much I have been forgiven and I was aware of how God’s Grace had been extended to me – it was not difficult for me to extend that same grace to Dave.
Be kind and compassionate to one another,
forgiving each other,
just as in Christ God forgave you.
We continue to be “faithful stewards of God’s grace” through the ministry of Endurance to those who are in the midst of suffering. At Endurance we know that we all have weaknesses and those weaknesses are magnified and exposed during seasons of suffering – a needed time for God’s Grace. We extend His Grace to you.
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me;
my only aim is to finish the race
and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—
the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
God appoints our graces to be nurses to other men’s weaknesses.
HENRY WARD BEECHER
On the journey with you,