For years, I treated my china like an ancient heirloom. I didn’t want to use the plates. They were better preserved in a box than used in a kitchen where they may get scratched, chipped or broken. Until, one day, I decided, what good is a gift if you’re afraid to use it?
Now, they’re on a higher shelf. Less often used, but more easily accessed. Anyway, today, I started packing up the house (yes, we are moving!). And, as I pulled down a stack of Waterford plates from the high shelf, one broke. Bam!
Immediately, I had that sink-down-in-my-chest feeling. Then, my daughter said, “It’s okay, Mommy.” Two-seconds later, my son said, “Yes, mom. It’s just one piece.”
Amen! They were right!
I picked up the pieces and threw them away, with joy. Why? Because grace gave me peace.
One well-timed word of grace changes everything. It tells someone, “You don’t have to be perfect.” It silences anxiety. It breaks self-reproach. It offers perspective.
How do you extend grace to others?
I am not the world’s best grace-giver. I get really irritated when my kids intentionally do something I told them not to. But, if I’ve done one little thing right it’s to say — when something breaks — “It’s okay, be kind to yourself.”
Some of you need to say that to yourself, “It’s okay. I can be kind to myself.”
When you make a mistake. “It’s okay. I can be kind to myself.”
When you drop the casserole. “It’s okay. I can be kind to myself.”
When you say the words you didn’t intend to say. “It’s okay. I can be kind to myself.”
Let yourself off the hook once in a while. Why? Because Jesus didn’t die to condemn you; He died to save you.
Sure, you can learn along the way from what you do wrong. But, receive as much grace towards yourself as you give to others. This will bless you. It is a blessing well-earned for you by Christ.