Open to God’s Grace

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from you; it is the gift of God.” Ephesians 2:8

God's GraceThere is an old saying, “If you want light to come into your life, then you need to stand where it is shining.” For many people, suffering hard times make them withdraw and keep their feelings within themselves. And, they move further and further away from the light of God’s grace and into the darkness of their own solitude.

Have you ever built a fire on a cold winter night? If you want to get warm, you move closer to the fire, right? We all know that the closer we stand to the flame the greater the warmth.

The same is true for God’s grace.

The meaning of life. The wasted years of life. The poor choices of life. God answers the mess of life with one word: ‘grace.’ –Max Lucado

If we want to be wrapped in God’s grace then we must move toward Him. We must move into His light and be warmed by the fire of His amazing grace!

There are many times in our lives when we feel alienated from God, stuck in our own fears, worry, and anxiety. We retreat into ourselves, away from the light, away from the warmth of the fire of God’s love, mercy, and grace.

In times like these, we need to move toward God, recalling the places and times that we felt close to our Savior and go there.

Where can we start?

  1. Try gratitude. When we are so self-absorbed in the problems of the day, being grateful for the blessings we have starts us on the path to grace. Grace and Gratitude have the same Latin root, Gratis. Whenever you find yourself feeling like nothing is going right, stop for a moment and think of your blessings.  Being grateful for what you have will help you with the grace necessary to deal with your situation.
  2. Try Forgiveness. I have had countless people tell me that going to the sacrament of confession and receiving absolution flooded them with God’s grace. Confessing our sins and seeking forgiveness has a powerful healing effect.
  3. Try reaching out to a friend. Do you have a friend that is also going through tough times? They may have had a recent surgery, lost a loved one, are having relationship problems or have recently lost a job. Reach out with a phone call, or a thoughtful card, or better yet, visit them. Your being there for that person, one on one, will help you through your own tough times.
  4. Try serving others. Taking the focus off our problems and helping others with even greater challenges not only takes our minds off our problems, but triggers our own sense of gratefulness. Visit a friend in the hospital, an elderly relative in a nursing home, or volunteer at a homeless shelter food pantry. I promise you will begin to feel better and renew a sense the Lord’s presence in your life.
  5. Try rediscovering. By remembering the places where you have discovered God’s grace in the past, you can return there and find his grace again. Ask yourself, “Where have I felt the Lord’s presence in the past?”

It may be a physical place. It might be a church, a favorite spot in the park, favorite bike path or favorite easy chair.

Or, it could be a memory of a favorite day, a wedding, the birth of a child, an award you received, or a time that in helping someone you felt the overwhelming rush of God’s grace.

Pope Francis tells us, “Grace is not part of consciousness; it is the amount of light in our souls, not knowledge nor reason.”

Do you want to increase the amount of light in your life? Then, we need to stand where it is shining, in the loving arms of our Savior. Do you want to feel the glow of God’s mercy; then move closer to Him, close enough to be bathed in the warmth of His grace.

You are in my prayers, my friend.

If you enjoyed this story, you can have  Tony’s stories emailed to you every Monday morning, and not miss a single one.  Subscribe by clicking here. You will be sent an e-mail to verify your subscription.  Just click on the link and you’re all set.

Did you know that there is a Finding God’s Grace podcast too?  A new one is posted every Wednesday.  They are less than three minutes long and a great way to start your day.   If you would like to subscribe to his podcast, delivered every Thursday morning at 7AM to your e-mail, simply click here.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015 Tony Agnesi