What a Mess!

bloody cross

The Messy Foot of the Cross

“This place is a mess!” My mother pointed that out to us when we were kids, and now that I have four active children ranging from preschool to teen years, I frequently point it out, as well. But the messy place I’m referencing today isn’t my home. I’m continually struck by the messiness of another place, a place called grace. Grace refuses to be bound, refuses to be neatly packaged, refuses to land on just me or just you. It’s messy, overflowing onto everyone, getting all over everything. The same grace that is enough for you and me is sufficient for the most heinous of criminals, the most wretched of souls.

No matter what you’ve done and no matter what’s been done to you, God’s grace covers you, the ones you’ve harmed and the ones who’ve harmed you most. This comment is not at all to diminish the reality of suffering you may have experienced or the scars you may still bear. I’m simply sharing what I’ve come to believe, which is that those who’ve wounded me the deepest are living under the same grace by which I stand.

The most concise description of grace is: unmerited favor. We don’t deserve it. There’s nothing we can do to earn grace, and bless God, nothing we can do to be unworthy of it. Grace refuses to have an exclusive target, yet is determined to never miss its intended mark. A friend recently wrote a blog post, Grace Like Snow, and I had the thought, “Indeed, grace is like snow.” It’s not neat; it flutters on down, falling on everything around.

After revisiting a detailed description of the physical death of Jesus Christ, I remain convinced that Golgotha was a terribly messy place and that anyone physically involved in the death of Christ left covered in the same blood that paid their price. Those committing the worst crime against Jesus were the most covered in His precious blood. It’s amazing how the worst circumstances and worst offenses make grace all the more incomprehensible and all the more invaluable. As Christ hung on the cross, He begged for forgiveness of those same, unrepentant sinners who were yet causing His death. They were covered and didn’t even know it, covered by His blood, covered by His grace. What a mess the cross surely was. What a mess His grace surely is. It gets everywhere!

There’s a place exhuming every depth

Climbing every height, spanning every breadth

And this place has covered every cost

Still covers the saved, still saves the lost

Messy grace moves us to love the unlovable.

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19 responses to “What a Mess!

  1. Dee, You captured the essence of grace!! I sit in awe when I realize God was prepared to deal with the havoc of our lives. Grace!! While it covers, it activates. There’s nothing like it. It cost Him much… yet, it’s less than free! I will be reflecting on this all day. Thank You!!

    • “I sit in awe when I realize God was prepared to deal with the havoc of our lives.”<<<i'll be quoting u on this..amen! thx and amen! glory to His name that u were blessed! have a great day of reflection. God's so awesome!

  2. This is so beautiful, it leaves me awestruck. Grace is not neat; it includes forgiveness and peace and love and life, none of which we deserve. Yet, all we need do is open our hearts to our Savior who paid it all so we could be free. We have been unlovable and yet we forget when it comes to offering grace to those who we consider “difficult” to love. Bless you for the reminder to look in the mirror, then extend an open hand.

    • amen, Susan! so glad u were blessed by it! so true, grace includes so much and goes so far! extending an open hand is far better than extending a pointing finger. God truly loved us while we were unlovable…WHILE we were yet sinners, He died. what wondrous love!

  3. Thank you for this message of grace today. I feel so messy, so much of the time, what a blessing to know that doesn’t bother Him, that He is willing to reach right in and lift me up. God bless you and yours and Merry Christmas!

    • all glory to God, Debbie! what a mess we truly are, and what a mess of grace we’ve found ourselves in. thx for that phrasing, too. when i’m a mess, i’m glad for messy grace! God bless, hon, and merry Christmas to u, too!

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