I was reading a thread earlier today in which a colleague mentioned the word “gracious” with reference to the handling of conflicts, while another referred to learning how we should be people of grace.
And I realized that we sometimes have a chintzy, religious, or limited picture of grace sometimes.
Now, granted, I think being people of grace is a good thing. But I would contend further that the complete picture of grace was Yeshua.
And let me characterize some of those shades of grace in dealing with conflict, some of which were seen in the life of Yeshua.
Yeshua and Peter near Cesarea Philipi in Matthew 16. Yeshua declared that he was going to suffer, and Peter took him aside to rebuke him. Yeshua’ response, as harsh as it was, was a reponse of grace, because Peter was being used in that moment by the enemy to sideline Jesus from his birthright, and the necessary path that led to possessing his birthright.
Let that sink in. Grace does whatever is necessary to bring us into the fullness of our calling, and grace will sometimes respond in anger in order to execute. Jesus is G-d the Very Picture of Grace. He was G-d the One Who is Full of Grace and Truth.
Grace will sometimes step up and harshly correct those who are flat-wrong.
Saul, the Servant, SLAUGHTERED HIS OXEN WHEN THE SPIRIT OF ADONAI RUSHED UPON HIM. This was an act of grace.
Jesus made a whip of cords to get the moneychangers out of the temple. That was an act of the One Who Is Full Of Grace and Truth.
Grace in the Greek refers to a “gift”.
Holy Spirit comes, and brings with him gifts, which are graces.
The Spirit rushed upon Samson in order to kill Philistines. An act of grace.
Again, we think to act graciously means to bite our tongue when we sometimes should not bite our tongue we it is our time to step up and correct people.
Granted, there is a time when we get the grace to bite our tongues. Ezekiel, for example.
But there are also times when we are given the grace to act, and in that moment the gracious thing may be to correct.
The gracious thing may be to wrestle.
The gracious thing may be to chop the head off of the Philistine.
The gracious thing may be to call that bonehead out on his or her crap that is getting in the blinkin’ way of you doing your job, because your birthright, gifting, calling, and hardwiring are on the line.
There is a time and a place when the Spirit rushes on us and gives us the grace to “be gracious”
But there is also a time and a place where the Spirit rushes upon us and gives us the grace to “muscle in and wrestle” with the archon and the exousia of this present darkness, and to tell that damned imp, critter, jackass, lasagna, rubber ducky, clown (whatever your moniker for the enemy is) to get the hell behind us.
Arthurs last podcast was another flavor of grace. Grace for dealing with predators, and those predators are going to create a mess, and sometimes we put up with vomit and hell and idiocy when the grace upon us it to tell it to shut up, and its our responsibility to cancel its assignment.
Sometimes the gracious and graceful response, the response where the fulness of G-d’s grace is, is the response that isn’t “gracious” in accordance with how we typically view grace.
Grace is not an attitude. Grace is a posture that comes in response to the gift of the color, aroma, flavor, shade, and tone of G-d’s grace that that comes from G-d to us in a given day.
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth (John 1:14).
He is full of grace even when He is walking in a G-d-ordained anger.
So should we.
And hell no, it is not grace or gracious to take it on the chin when the grace upon you is to wreck the enemy’s vomit of structures. Adapt to and embrace whatever the color of grace is for the day, and you will be walking in the gracious response.
Grace, again, is defined as where the L-rd is working and what He enables you to do. It is not limited to a certain behavior or attitude.
Just some random thoughts to provoke y’all to a grace-based response.
And grace is not defined by meekness or gentleness alone.