It's a beautiful word.
No doubt if you are a Christian there is some sort of emotion stirred in you at the reading of it.
Perhaps your instantly filled with comfort, perhaps you're thankful, perhaps a little uneasiness arises in you due to the doctrinal debate on grace that has plagued Christian communities for a while now. No matter your immediate reaction, you need grace. I need grace. We need grace.
Lord, hear my constant cry for help,
show me Your favor and bring me to Your fountain of grace!
Restore joy to Your loving servant once again,
For all I am is Yours.
Lord, You are so good to me, so kind in every way
And ready to forgive, for Your grace fountain keeps overflowing
Drenching all Your lovers who pray to You.
(Ps. 86:3-5 TPT)
Psalms 86 in the Passion Translation has been one of my favorites for about a year now. Today as I sat rereading it, I was brought to tears.
First process.... Crying out and Repentance. I need His grace fountain. I need a place to run to when I have been wrong, when I have messed up, when I have made mistakes, I need Him to know that I care that I sinned, I need Him to know that it matters to me that I was wrong, and I need to hear those words. "I forgive you, I love you".
I was sitting at a table over dinner with some of my best friends in Lubbock last week when I used my friend to give an illustration for this point. She's been a great friend, we were roommates for 3 years, we care about each other and we love each other. If I slap my friend (representative of doing anything to "hurt" someone), she may not "need" an apology, but my goodness I sure want to apologize. She's a dear friend and I feel sorrowful for my actions. I'm the same way with Jesus. My goodness I love Him so much and when I sin, I just want to tell Him I'm sorry, I want Him to know that I care that I acted in a way not representative of who I am as a child of God. So as I read that line, my goodness, it felt like a ton of bricks and I just started to tell Him again, how much I want live in a way that represents my identity as a Christ follower. I cried out for Papa to come running and scoop me up in His arms. Take away my hurts, take away my sorrows, lead me into His joy!
Second process.... Jesus and joy. "Restore joy, for all I am is Yours". His grace fountain reminds me of my identity. I'm His child and that's pretty special. The Creator of the Universe is my Daddy, my Friend, my Love. Some people listen to comedians to get happy, I just remind myself of Who Loves Me. When you're soaking in unconditional forgiveness fully knowing that you deserve punishment, it's really difficult to not be happy!
I am not a proponent of any sort of injustice, but just imagine being a known thief. The bloat knows he committed those robberies, but as the verdict of not guilty is read you know there is some joy and elation going on.
Everyday I run to the throne room of grace. Everyday He remains constant and true to His Word, constantly casting my sins far away, dusting me off and sending me back out. That's a good Daddy and His unending grace, mercy, and affirmation cause me to be undone.
He is so kind. He is so good. He never stops pouring out grace on those who come to the throne room of grace. He is a good good God.
Today I needed the reminder of how extraordinary His grace is. I needed to remember that that grace fountain doesn't get plugged up. Maybe you needed it too.