Last night after discussing serious subjects at the supper table — our nightly Bible reading, inflation, property tax hikes, tidbits from yesterday’s chemistry lesson about ionic and covalent bonding — I ran upstairs to get ready for my weekly date night with my husband. The woman who greeted me in the mirror had wild hair and one earring flipped out of place, not to mention bulky leg warmers attempting to disguise the fact that her favourite brown cords are a few inches too short!
I laughed out loud. Really, it’s a wonder my family can take me seriously. It’s a wonder my man wanted to take me on a date! But the biggest wonder of all is that God seriously loves me. God, who can see far beyond wardrobe faux pas and bad hair days! God, who knows more of my ugly truth than anyone else.
Since hearing a sermon from the first chapter of John before Christmas, I have been meditating on this verse:
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.John 1:14 NIV
Grace and truth. I’ll admit the two don’t always mix in my mind. Why is it I tend to dial down the grace when it’s time to speak the truth? And if grace is in order, I feel tempted to tweak the truth. It seems I can only focus on one driving force at a time giving shape to my actions and words. But the Bible describes Jesus as full of both.
If we’re not careful, we can assume it’s some sort of 50/50 split, but it’s not. Jesus is full of grace. And He is full of truth.
When Jesus tells us the truth, He doesn’t set grace on the back burner. And when He extends grace, He doesn’t shield us from the truth. But isn’t that what makes His grace so amazing, His truth so transforming?
I love Max Lucado’s definition of grace.
Grace is the voice that calls us to change and then gives us the power to pull it off.Max Lucado
Yes! God’s amazing grace works seamlessly with His transforming truth. You can’t know the fullness of one without the other. He sees every hidden speck of us, the heinous and the holy. He knows us, inside and out. Yet the full weight of truth does not diminish the full measure of grace He extends.
Standing disheveled in front of the mirror last night, struck by the love and acceptance of my family (who see more of my truth than anyone, next to God), I was reminded that it isn’t beauty that makes us beloved. It’s being loved that makes us beautiful. And the most perfect love we can ever know is found in the fullness of grace and fullness of truth Jesus came to bring us.