Grace is something the Lord is gently teaching me, and sometimes I get through complete and utter failure. Which makes it all the more needed and sweet I suppose. Here are some precious moments when I messed up and got the opposite of what I deserved:
I went to daycare. Let's just call it what it was. They didn't have fancy "childhood development NAECAEEHACCDEC" names for it back then. It was straight up daycare. And I remember crying like a howler monkey banshee crossbreed every time I got dropped off. It was hard for me to make friends. I didn't know what to do with myself. This didn't get any better until about 4 years ago (Praise Jesus).
I still remember my very first friend: Tick. Tick was the first person that showed me grace. She was at the daycare too. I was 3-4ish. My dad was battling cancer round one and like I said, it was not easy to make pals. I could blame it on being an only child, but I really think it was just the way I'm bent: quirky. So tough times required me to grow up, ASAP.
Tick liked me without words. I don't think she spoke English very well. It didn't matter. She would play with me and smile. We liked blocks. The other kids were just so uggghhh!!! Running around and terrorizing me and others. One day I got in a squirmish and I faintly remember hitting someone with something in defense or straight up intolerance. Then I felt the immense guilt surge. Oh this feeling of guilt would be one that permeated every moment of my life for the next 27 years until I would start to understand the keyword mentioned above: GRACE. Guilt was the tool the enemy used on my soul day in and day out.
Anyways, back to my bad decision of the smashing a kid. So I smashed the kid and felt sick-awful about it. I mean I didn't bludgeon him or her, but I reacted in anger. Then the teacher told me to go to the principal. I guess they had principals back then in daycare. So I sobbed down the hall to her office. I think it took me 10 minutes to walk 300 ft. I got there and saw a really nice faced older lady. I mean her face glowed like a glow worm. She smiled at me. SMILED. Then she said, "Gillian, do you need a hug?" (I'm tryping- cry-typing as I write). And she proceeded to show me a second, engrained dose of GRACE. I ate that hug up and never, ever forgot it obviously.
I have a besty that I met at Walgreens in middle school. She was yelling for her dad on one aisle and I was on another. 'PAPA!' 'PAPA!' I thought it was funny she was calling him that and I don't remember why, but I jumped around the corner and yelled, 'BABUSHKA!!!' to her. We were 2 peas from then on. I love her and her family. I remember always being welcome at her house. Always seeing a family that loved with ease. Then one day when we were grown up, I did something stupid. Well, I was a fool to her many times before that. I acted on some bad advice, didn't matter because I was the one that acted on it from a trusted family member. I reacted. A thing one tends to do when they aren't walking with Jesus. Do you know what? This super friend showed me some more of that perfect word, GRACE. She wiped the slate clean when she could have held that grudge. I love you Babushka and thank you for the GRACE.
We love to host sweet middle-school age kids from China through our church home, Second Baptist- West. We were hosting two sweet girls and showed them the glory of Hobby Lobby. One of them accidentally broke a crystal cross immediately after she paid for it. She was shaken and about in tears when the sweet cashier told her to get another one. Rose did and I tried to pay for it- not letting Rose attempt to. The cashier told her to just take it without payment. That my friends is our word, GRACE. Beautiful, right?
Only because I've experienced the ultimate favor of GRACE with Jesus and these above do I now know how to apply it to others. Thank you God for this!
Will you please do yourself and others a favor and show some GRACE today to someone? It could be that dude at McD's that's sour faced and slow moving or that crazy mom with hot flashes in the Ross check out line, but please try it out! Warning: it's addicting.