One Ministry, One Church, One Message Worldwide
Many of us get a sinking feeling when we realize we’ve hurt someone and need to ask for forgiveness. The humble act of forgiving someone is challenging for some, because it involves extending grace to another while showing mercy and compassion. God asks us to do this as often as necessary, because He knows there will always be people who need pardoning grace. Everyone messes up at times, but His grace is always greater than whatever sin we commit.
Sometimes we’re on the receiving end of the hurt, and we desperately need God’s grace to free us from the pain. How do we find this grace, and where is it? Well, grace is God’s unmerited, unearned favor. It is Jesus, Who was grace in human form, and He can always be found in the Word.
During His earthly ministry, Jesus made Himself available for those who sought Him. One example is the woman who suffered with bleeding for years before seeking Jesus’ help. “And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, which had spent all her living upon physicians, neither could be healed of any, came behind him, and touched the border of his garment: and immediately her issue of blood stanched. And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace” (Luke 8:43, 44, 48). Since this woman was made whole after her encounter with Jesus, not only was she healed of her physical ailment, but the emotional pain of rejection was healed and her finances were restored, as well. Grace often pairs physical wholeness with wholeness in other areas of our lives.
Another amazing characteristic of Grace is that He’s always willing to seek out the individuals who need Him—even those who don’t know they need Him. Those who feel especially rejected and unloved are the very ones Jesus seeks out with fervor. Two more examples are the Samaritan woman at the well and Zacchaeus, the hated tax collector.
When Grace met the woman and told her that the water He gave led to everlasting life, she responded to Him in faith. She believed Him, asked for this living water, and was radically changed on the inside (John 4:4-29). When Grace came to Zacchaeus’ town, Zacchaeus acted in faith by climbing a tree to watch as He passed by. Grace responded to his faith by showing him favor, and Zacchaeus was a changed man (Luke 19:1-6, 8, 9).
Just like these people, we could never do anything to earn God’s undeserved favor; but it still pursues and overtakes us. This is God’s true nature. When He extends favor to us, we can either be like the centurion soldier who responded to it in faith (Luke 7:1-10), or be like the rich young ruler who pushed it away (Mark 10:17-22). God leaves it up to us to make the decision.
Humbly seeking out His grace is one of the boldest things we can do. “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16). Right when we need God the most, He reveals Himself with mercy and forgiveness. Because He freely offers this grace to us, we can freely offer it to others.