Easier said than done.
An invite that whispers to us to breathe when we just want to scream with frustration.
A call to treat others better than they treat us. Treat others the way you want to be treated not necessarily how they treat you.
“Grace makes beauty out of ugly things.” ~ Bono
A while ago, I had requested a book, which was expected to arrive within 2-3 weeks. Three weeks passed and nothing. I reached out to the sender who informed me that the book was shipped and delivered. The thing is, I never received it. Upon further investigation, I learned that the shipping company delivered my package to the wrong address and the person at that location received it and signed for it. They also processed the package without looking at the label and checking that it was indeed for them.
Two individuals on the same day, failed to look at what they were doing.*
How many times have I been guilty of failing to look at what I was doing? How many times have I operated on automatic pilot and as a result let the ball drop? How many times have I been in need of Grace? Probably too many times to count.
And so here I am writing about Grace because I struggle with it. I wish it was automatic for me. I wish that frustration wouldn’t even enter my blood stream or invade my thoughts. But I’m a work in progress (and my guess is, you are too if you care to admit it).
The truth is, we have this incredible ability to recount all the unfair things that have happened to us yet somehow get amnesia when it comes to remembering the grace we’ve been shown time and time again. I’m guilty of this way more than I’d like to admit.
So how exactly do we give grace when we don’t feel like it?
1. Take a deep breath. No cheap breaths here.
2. Know that you may never ever FEEL like giving grace. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t or can’t.
4. Remember the wise words of Bono: “Grace makes beauty out of ugly things.” I’d like to extend that to ugly (unfair) situations, ugly circumstances, ugliness in general. It’s a way of seeing-a perspective of power vs. pettiness and pity.
Is this a surefire way of eliminating frustration and unfair situations from your life? No.
Is this a way of letting someone off the hook? No.
Is this a way of protecting y(our) peace and maintaining y(our) joy? Hell Yes.
Grace like any muscle becomes stronger as we use it.
So dear friend, my invite to you and I is that when life throws us a curveball (when we are faced with unfair situations, inconveniences, etc.), may you and I be people of GRACE: Give Respect And Compassion Everyday .
Grace. A way of seeing. A way of living. A way of loving…by example.
“God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things which should be changed and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.”- Reinhold Niebuhr
*Note: Two days later, I went to my scheduled appointment only to find out that my appointment was never entered into the system and as a result another person was booked into the time slot. Though disappointment, frustration did not get the better of me. I remembered the Grace thing and as a result was able to keep my joy and maintain my peace. The good news is, they were able to fit me in at the end of the day (which meant I could come home and finish writing this post). As for the book mix up that was discovered earlier this week? It got resolved. The book is in my hand and the people involved apologized. The bonus of all of this is, it gave me something to write about this week. Blessings almost always come in disguise!