Monday, November 3, 2008

Walking In Grace


“I believe marriage holds both the greatest potential for hurt, yet the greatest opportunity for grace to be shown.”

Today our theme for Marriage Monday is grace. Oh, of all the many virtues we can emulate in our marriage, this one is right at the top for me. I don't think it is possible for a marriage to flourish without the gift of grace being appropriated on a daily basis.

So what is grace and how does it look in a marriage?

The word grace is used several different ways in both the old and new testament. Some of the definitions denote gracefulness or beauty, but most generally it means favor or good will.

One thing we know for sure is that grace was given to us all as a free gift from God.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:8–10).

Some of the ways we can exercise grace in our marriage would be:

Forgiveness. Gosh, we get this opportunity each and every day! It's so easy to be offended, misunderstood, hurt, and the list goes on. Each time we purpose to forgive we offer the same gift to our spouse that was given to us by God. I'm so glad we are forgiven and our sins have been cast into a sea of forgetfulness. Is it not right that we are willing to do the same thing for the person we love most in this world? OK, I work on this one daily, and have by no means come close to arriving.

Accepting Differences. Another way we can demonstrate grace is by accepting each other's differences. Ouch... I know it would seem wonderful if you and your spouse enjoyed everything exactly the same. If you had the same passions, hobbies, taste in food, etc. I'm truly blessed my husband is so patient as he attempts to be involved in many of the things I enjoy. In the same way, I realize I have to learn to be patient and show interest in the things he enjoys as well. OK, Rick you can faint after reading this statement! Ladies, let me make a confession to you right now. I am the only female in the house of 6 guys. I am so tired of SPORTS, but I’m trying to learn. Is there anything else in life?

Make Room for Mistakes. There are so many ways we can exercise grace, and it would take way too much time to try and cover them all, so for now I'll conclude with this one. Allow each other the opportunity to make a mistake! Now, who likes to be told, "I told you so". I know as a woman its second nature to be a teacher. We do this daily with our children and it so easy to carry this over to our spouses. Many times our expectations can be way too high. As we walk in grace, our mates should feel they have the room to fail without feeling condemned. They are not perfect and neither are we. If we lovingly let them know we are standing right along side of them, even when they fail, they will become more vulnerable and open. Now, isn't that really our deepest desire? And we can only gain that by giving the gift of grace.

I want more then ever to have a grace-filled marriage where there is love, beauty, and God's unmerited favor operating on a daily basis. This concept is much easier to write about than it is to put into practice. May God give us grace to live this out each day.

“Lord, remind me daily of your unfailing grace in my life as I offer it to my husband. Give me your heart that is so full of unconditional love. A heart that is slow to anger, quick to forgive, merciful in judgment, and filled with your compassion. May my life be an example of your grace each day.”
Please join Robyn today at Overflowing Grace as she hosts our Marriage Monday.

16 comments:

luvmy4sons said...

Amen to everything...as one with five guys and the only female..I so understand about dealing gracefuly with differences...and expectations that are high. Men have different desires and often do not SEE what we automatically see and assume they do too! LOL! GRACE. It is a wonderful thing to bestow lavishly in your marriage.

Sheryl said...

Thanks for this! There may be a time when God restores my marriage and wow will we both need to show grace.

Love ya,
~Sheryl

Laurie Ann said...

What a precious post on the extension of grace to our husbands. I loved it, Susan. Thanks for the reminder, inspiration and wisdom found here.

MiPa said...

Lovely post full of truth! Bless you for sharing.

Faith said...

This was great!
We both did seem to be on the same page with this topic!
Blessings to you...

Andrea said...

You are so right...a daily application of grace is a must in marriage! I especially like the idea of overlooking mistakes. This is the one area I need to improve upon.

Thanks for allowing God to use you to bless me!

Lynn said...

Susan,

Wow, and amazing post. You made me smile about you and sports... too funny.

And your words of wisdom... from the heart of Christ. Awesome. Thank you.

Denise said...

This was awesomely beautiful.

Denise said...

This was awesomely beautiful.

God's Girl said...

GRACE -

God's
Riches
At
Christ's
Expense

Oh how I need to be more like Jesus in the area of giving much more grace to my husband.

Thank you for sharing this and for being such an encourager!

Bless you my Blog Friend!
xoxoxo

e-Mom said...

Excellent, my friend! Loved this post. Accepting differences. Yes, that's a huge one, and even after 30 years, I'm still working on it, daily. :~D

Making room for mistakes... such wisdom! We can stand over our husbands and wag our fingers, or we can decide to carry on with grace.

I loved this especially:

"Ladies, let me make a confession to you right now. I am the only female in the house of 6 guys. I am so tired of SPORTS, but I’m trying to learn. Is there anything else in life?"

You deserve a huge bouquet of roses for your longterm commitment to all your men. Well done, Susan!

And thanks for your faithfulness to visit so many participants of this meme today.

Love 'n Hugs,

e-Mom

Constance said...

I especially appreciated the comment about no one wants to be told I told you so. When we make a mistake or something doesn't work out, how does that make someone feel better?

We are to be encouragers and I really belive that grace is what enable us to do that! When we recognize the grace extended to us by God, we are filled with hope and expectation. We can speak life into someone else and encourage their hearts with that same hope and expectation!

Have a lovely day!
Connie

Tracy said...

Amen, dear one...beautifully said. Like you, I long to be a grace-filled wife!

(I do feel for you being such the minority in your house! No wonder you adore those grandGIRLS so much!)

Hugs,
Tracy

Tami Boesiger said...

I LOVE the practical steps to showing grace you give us here, Susan. VERY helpful. Well done, friend.

The Surrendered Scribe said...

These are wonderful words we should all put into practice. Great post!

Denise said...

There is such a need for the teaching of Grace in a marriage in our world today. People, male and female alike are under the impression that there is no give or take in a marriage....... How we need to teach that the grace that was extended to us from the Father to show HIS unconditional love is the same grace that we are to show our husband or wife our unconditional love....... They need not be perfect....... we just love them........ That takes GOD in our life......