I heard her sniffles in front of me at the altar. When I finished praying with my husband, I felt nudged to embrace her from behind. “The Lord bless you, Dear one” were the words that came. Her body softened as she leaned back into the hug. I returned to my seat, but as the service concluded I saw her coming my way. Her eyes searched with desperation to get to me. Tears dripped from her cheeks as we held each other in a full lingering hug.
As we sat down she freely poured out the cry of her heart. With heads pressed together we cried out to the Lord. I simply followed the nudge and God let me be His arms to hold his daughter. She needed to know He saw her and He heard her. She kept thanking me for my obedience.
This experience was enough in itself, but there was more to come.
As we stood to leave church, I told her I would look for her next Sunday and asked where she sat. It was her answer that continues to ring in my ears. “I sit right down there. I sing in the choir and then I always sit with Grace. Do you know Grace?”
I always sit with Grace. Do you know Grace?
Oh, how my heart leapt. In recent days I have been reading and studying about this powerful little word. Grace. Just as Grace was her friend that she always sat with, I have come to understand that Grace is a Person, not a doctrine. His name is Jesus. He hung on the cross for me and Grace was poured out. I always have a seat with Grace reserved for all eternity.
Undeserved, Unmerited, Unworthy…but it’s mine. I did nothing to earn it and will never do anything to keep it. It covers me like a blanket dissolving all my guilt and shame.
I can choose to sit with Shame, Guilt, Condemnation and Performance or I can sit with Grace. I choose Grace because I am always accepted. I don’t have to measure up or dress it up. I come as I am and He rejoices in me.
Do you know Grace? He has a seat for you!
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9)