The Leading Grace

“The spirit of the Lord will possess you…and you will be turned into a different person.”
Excerpt from 1 Samuel 9:27-10:8


We ought to be something we’re not. I should be smarter, more thoughtful, not so impatient, more self-confident, less risk averse, not so concerned about the approval of others. I should be able to attach a file to an email all the time. I should be able to send the right file. I shouldn’t make so many mistakes in typing. The list is endless. We’re never enough. So it seems.

We turn into whatever we need to be when first we know that God is with us, just as we are. Saul remained Saul but with a difference when he could believe that despite his weakness and inadequacy the spirit of God was with him. In his case, he became king.

While hard to grasp, God’s presence is not as far from us as we may think. As with Saul, awareness of this makes a difference: looking ahead becomes a lot more promising. In the words of the lead character in Wendell Berry’s novel, Jayber Crow: “Often I have not known where I was going until I was already there…Often my fairest hopes have rested on bad mistakes. I am an ignorant pilgrim, crossing a dark valley. And yet for a long time, looking back, I have been unable to shake off the feeling that I have been led – make of that what you will.”

Maybe we should quit thinking of all the ways we should be different and be glad for the difference God has already made. The grace that has led us this far is not through with us yet… and neither is God through with any of us.

“Finish, then, thy new creation,” O God. Change us “from glory into glory, ‘till in heaven we take our place.” Amen.

Grace and Peace
Steve

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