In his address he described 2020 as the blending of the 1918 pandemic with the 1968 social and political unrest, wrapped in the 2008 econcomic collapse. One such crisis can throw our lives into chaos. To be bombarded on several fronts is almost overwhelming. Our hearts and minds have been overloaded with fear and uncertainty, hatred and violence, more that we were ever created to endure.
What is missing in our world today? In a word, 'GRACE'.
The Bible says, there is a grace in our lives because of his grace (John 1:16 - J.B. Philips New Testament). And because of that grace, we can and must lead the way in building communities of grace. Lewis notes that a grace-filled community demands multliple architects. We have both the opportunity and responsibility to be conduits of HIs grace, perhaps more so than at any other time in our lifetime. This is a season for many of us, who are in the third third of our lives, to be difference makers as we manifest patience and understanding, caring and compassion in the face of fear and uncertainty; to show to a hurting world that God has a better way, to pray for grace and love to triumph over fear and anxiety.
Solomon asks: What do people get for all the toil and anxious striving with which they labor under the sun? All their days their work is grief and pain; even at night their minds do not rest. This too is meaningless (Ecclesiastes 2:22-23).
Peter reminds us, there is another way, a better way to face the uncertaines of our day: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (1 Peter 4:6-7).
And Paul exhorts us to not become weary in doing good...as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers (Galatians 6;9-10).
We all have a role in building and sustaining a grace-filled community. It is why, in good times and bad, many of us find ourselves turning to that old standby -- born of a different era, challenged by a different code of ethics, framed by a world of cruel encounters and confrontation...'Amazing Grace how sweet the sound'. (Earl Lewis)
Grace, it can make all the difference! In the words of former U.S. President Barak Obama: May we find ourselvs worthy of that extraordinary gift as long as our lives endure.