Thursday, January 26, 2012

Grace on a Thursday: in Heather's words

It is my pleasure to introduce Heather Holden to you all today! Most likely you already know her. She is such a sweetheart, spreading her love and encouragement in comments all over blogland. And she keeps a lovely blog called We Are the Holdens. Well, because they are {see below}. What a beautiful family she has, and an even more beautiful heart. She was also recently a birthday girl (January babies are extra cool).

Today, Heather was kind enough to share her thoughts on grace with us, and she includes a vulnerable story about how she encountered grace in her own marriage. Thank you so much, Heather, for reminding me that the times we find ourselves to be the most foolish are also the times we are blessed by grace the most. Please show Heather some love today (and don't forget to check out her blog)!

Grace is such a small word but one that holds such a vast meaning.

Oh, the depths that it goes. This pardon I receive daily comes without my deserving it at all.

That is what grace is to me, something given to me that I did nothing to deserve. But please make no mistake to think I should know anything other than that which I have experienced personally. The older I get the more I realize how very little I actually do know and still there is so much more to be learned.

I though,…I have received this grace. For it is by none other than grace that I am able to write out my thoughts here to you today.

Jesus and his love for me, marrying my husband, giving birth to my children - all of it grace.

I could tell you of my salvation or of all the blessings that have been given me in this life, but the pages would be never ending. This unmerited grace is interwoven in every detail of my life, and it always comes back to, points back to grace.

It is pretty easy to receive grace and it's something I desire from others. Like one day, after a late night of working on the computer, I ran across an ad for a “work from home” business. For only $99, I could receive the information to start me on my way to making a great monthly income. I went to consult my husband and get his advice on the situation only to find him snoring, loudly. My time was running out and if I didn’t make the decision quick it would be lost. How many red flags do you think I needed before catching on to this? Apparently a bunch, because I hit “purchase.” My “make money from home” business started downloading and so did the fact that I had been scammed. I was worried that Jode would be upset with me about wasting the $100, money that’s not easy for us to come by, on a scam from the computer. I was devastated that I had been so dumb and couldn’t even believe myself. He had every right to be upset at me, mad even. But you know what? He wasn’t, and he’s never thrown it up to me since….grace given.

I can’t get past the showing of grace to others. Do I give or show that same grace that I so easily want to receive? When is the last time I’ve shown grace where it has cost me? Meaning it’s hurt a little.

I can give grace to my kids, even my husband, most of the time, fairly easily. But what about the one to whom it’s hard to show grace because he or she is just a difficult person. And what if I feel a wrong has been done to me?

I think about the person in the church that my family loved and respected. We had invested our lives with him and his family, and he wronged us. I didn’t want to forgive or show him any mercy or allow any grace to flow to him. He didn’t deserve that. It was going to be hard and it was going to hurt to do those things.

But I was reminded that grace isn’t always easy. If it were easy, Jesus wouldn’t have had to die on a cross. He is the one I have to ask to give me the grace to forgive or show others. It’s definitely not about me or anything I can do on my own strength. It’s a flowing of grace in and through me so that I can give because I have been given to.

People are hurting from every direction and we have no idea what they are going through. Some just need to be heard; grace can be shown through taking the time to listen.

The wife with no baby in her womb.
The family who has gone through loss of business, land, and home.
A little girl in school who tells of her parents divorcing because her dad is mean.
The waitress with worries of how she will make ends meet.
People who are broken and need grace.
We want to experience that same grace from others as well.

I want to continue to know more and more of this grace so that it is free to flow through me.
Jesus said, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

Thank you Leslie for your Grace on a Thursday posts. They’re always a highlight in my day and you are an encouraging soul…a truly beautiful person.

Happy Thursday.


  1. So beautiful, Heather. Your words are always so sincere and encouraging.

  2. so poetically put, heather. an amazing husband you have, and amazing insight you have shared with us. God bless you!

  3. Such good stuff always :)

  4. You are so right. We all need grace. I often forget how much I have been given, and then I struggle to give it when I should. But it needs to flow from me, because we all need it sooo much. I love how easily your husband gave you grace... what a good example to follow. :)

  5. beautiful, heather. thank you so much for this!

  6. Beautifully written. Thank you for the reminder of extending grace daily. Thanks to Leslie too.

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