Making Room for Grace... (when you're known as Jenni Justice)

"You don't give grace easily, so that is why you have a hard time accepting God's grace?" Those were really hard words to hear, especially coming from my husband, but they were the truth.  My husband is such a great example of grace. He forgives easily and doesn't keep a record of wrongs. I, on the other hand am quick to bring up things that happened 10 years ago if we are in a fight, even things that I may have said I had forgiven him for.  It's a joke amongst my family and friends that I am JENNI JUSTICE. I am all about justice and right and wrong. If you do something wrong you should pay for it.

Is this the way our God thinks? I do believe that our God is a God of justice, but he is also a God of compassion and grace. He knows first hand the struggles that we go through and forgives us. He loves us unconditionally, just as we are. I've been learning day by day to have more grace towards others. It's actually very freeing to give compassion and grace. When I choose to hold onto bitterness and resentment, it consumes my mind. To instead walk alongside someone and to love them with no judgment is so much easier. Who am I to judge them anyway? That's not my job at all! I'm called to love others just as God loves me.

When I lay in bed at night trying to fall asleep, that is when I always do my deepest thinking. The other night I was thinking about God's grace towards me and I thought about God as my father. This made me think about my role as a mother to my boys and how I show them grace so naturally. My husband has said that I give my boys more grace than I give to others. Why is that? As I laid in bed the other night I really thought about it.

I came to the conclusion that it's because I know my boys in and out. I know when they're hurting and when they're happy. I know when they've had a bad day and when they just have a bad attitude because they haven't eaten. There are times they need discipline and correction but there are other times when they just need grace. As their mother I can usually see those times. They need me to love them unconditionally and to be there to pick them up when they fall, just as my father in heaven is there for me.

As I laid there in bed it made sense to me, and I prayed that I would have the same set of eyes and the same love and grace in my heart with my husband, family, and friends that I have with my boys.