I don’t remember when the word grace started resonating with me, but it has and in fact, it is from which the name of this blog was derived! In part, it’s a special word to me because the biblical definition of my name Hanna means just that, grace. However, it also encapsulates the unfolding of our relationship with God. In Ephesians 2:8-10, it reads
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
We can never over-emphasize the beauty and richness of this word. Everything we do, how we live and breathe and have our being, is an outcome of grace.
When you google this word, you’ll see it says there that in Christian belief, it means “the free and unmerited favour of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.” It’s true! Grace is completely free. We did not and cannot do anything to pay for God’s grace. It is an undeserved gift. It is receiving both salvation and blessings beyond what we can ever ask for. Being saved from the punishment we should have gone through is grace. Receiving a beautiful life on top of salvation is only through grace as well.
In Romans 6:14, it says:
For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
In the same way, let’s live with grace. To live in full dependence on God, not under our own control or under obligation of man-made laws, lest we fall into legalism or liberalism. To not live in fear of failures and mistakes, but with joy from the forgiveness of our sins and the hope of our restoration and redemption through Jesus. And to live by faith because of the grace that abounds from the very work of Jesus on the cross.
When you look up the etymology of the word grace, it comes from the Latin word gratus meaning thankful. Also, the Greek word for grace is “χάρις” or charis which means to be cheerful. In that sense, the word grace becomes an inherently beautiful word and its very essence is gratitude such that if and when we have a full comprehension of God’s grace, there is an uncontrollable compulsion to be thankful. In addition, the Hebrew translation of grace in the Old Testament is ןחֵ ḥên or chen which relates to kindness, favor, pleasant or precious. (Greek and Hebrew translations referred from the Strongs Concordance).
I’m reminded that there are times I forget to be grateful because I lose sense of the grace that God bestows upon me everyday. I lose sight of the unmerited favor and underserved gifts that I receive. I become entitled to the blessings because I become unconscious of the fact that these are not what I deserve, even if I am given the privilege to access them through the grace of God. It’s a good thing His grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9) that when I make mistakes, it is not the end but He rebukes and restores me. And then, it brings me back to where I should be, grateful to be saved only by grace.