“Man is born broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is glue.” — Eugene O'Neill (1888-1953)
“Be nice to nerds. Chances are you’ll end up working for one.” — attributed to Bill Gates during a high school graduation speech
When learning to read and write, teachers first taught us “sight words.” These are basic words like a, and, big, blue, can, go, jump, little, look, make, me, my, not, one. They are the totally basic, simple words. Elementary. Kid’s stuff. Once we get them down, we can forget about them and move on to bigger, more adult-sounding words, right? If we are really smart, we don’t have to use a, cat, my, or in anymore. We can just use words like “antidisestablishmentarianisms”—the longest word in the English dictionary, right?
You can’t not use them. They are the glue that holds language together. Nothing works without them; but you might be tempted to think you have outgrown them as you grow up.
Grace is a Christian sight word. Yeah, it might be common and seem overused sometimes, but it’s not! It’s the glue that holds faith
together. Nothing works in Christianity without it—not even the big Christian words like soteriology
. Nothing. Because of that, you can be assured of a couple of things:
It’s always necessary to keep grace before your eyes, because grace leaks out of our brains.
Our tendency is to want to live out of the flesh and, because flesh loves law, we tend to walk towards law, towards keeping the rules, towards legalism. So we constantly have to remind ourselves that it is grace in which we live.
The evil one hates grace and will try to destroy and distort it every chance he gets.
For certain individuals whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our onlySsovereign and Lord. —Jude 1:4
Under the influence of the deceiver and the tendencies of the flesh, humans “change the grace of God” into many things. Sometimes it’s an excuse for inaction. Sometimes it’s a justification for sin. Sometimes it’s a smokescreen for unbelief. Often, it just gets left behind all together, lost amidst so many other words. So we have to constantly remember the pure and powerful meaning and purpose of grace.
Master Teacher, don’t let me ever think that I have grown up and graduated from grace! Instead, saturate my soul with its potent presence! Let me see grace as an absolutely indispensable Christian “sight word” that glues everything together. Show me today where I don’t see grace as important, then live that grace through me. Amen.