“We observed his glory—glory like that of an only child of a father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)
I think of grace as the experience of coming to an impasse and then having a brand new possibility open up, an unexpected way forward.
Grace is the wonderful recognition that we have a place full of promise to explore.
We experience grace every day. It is a part of life, a basic fact of experience. Life depends on grace.
We can rarely foresee how things will work out, but somehow they do. That’s grace.
A person full of grace is someone whose speech, behavior, and very presence is a continual gift, an opening up of one unexpected possibility after another.
Jesus is full of grace.
In the gospels, grace characterizes all his interactions. When we read about these encounters, we can ask ourselves, “Where is the grace here?”
This question helps reveal the new things Jesus is bringing into the world. It also points us to the practical meaning of scripture.
Jesus’s whole life was an example of grace.
His life made possible much of the moral, spiritual, intellectual, and artistic development of humanity.
John uses the image of an only child to describe grace. Anyone who has struggled to have children will understand why John uses this image. The birth of such a child is a renewal of the possibilities of life.
Grace is always accessible. When you feel stuck, ask Jesus for grace. Ask until grace arrives.
I said above that grace opens up a way forward. Another way to think of it is that grace opens up a way in—a way for us to move inwards towards the heart of things.
Grace unfolds the space of possibilities we already inhabit. Freeing us to see clearly, to act decisively, to change meaningfully, and to connect authentically with others.
No real problem is ever solved except through grace.