05 3 / 2012
'A riveting story of love, deception and grace' read the write up of the film I was about to watch. Grace, what an alien word in that setting. Grace, a word I had grown up, but rarely heard outside the pulpit or pews suddenly seemed highlighted by its out of place setting. How bizarre that grace was a concept I had subconsciously restricted to the sermon when we live in a world so desperate for it.
Grace is such a multifaceted word, a thankful dinner prayer, an undeserved gift, a legal term for a temporary exemption, a person with pose, sorry – don’t mean to turn this into an wikipedia entry!
In terms of the undeserved gift definition given by Christians, is there such thing as Grace without God? Is grace without God just luck – Luck someone was kind, luck you got what you wanted despite not earning or deserving it. If I win the lottery is that Grace as I did not deserve it more than the other entrants, or luck? Eek….is grace with God, Luck – are Grace and Luck interchangeable words. Or is Grace about intention – you were intended to have it! Anyway – that wasn’t where I was heading – just a strange meander of my mind. Sorry
In terms of this film they really meant forgiveness. A film about forgiveness? Now that is a Christian word for you. Maybe being forgiven is grace as we never deserve it. However do we need it? Is forgiveness a gift to the recipient, or a way of the grieved becoming free from the pain of being hurt and wronged? Buddha explains lack of forgiveness like this “Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” So is forgiveness therefore selfless? Is it therefore Grace to its receivers – oh so many questions!
Personally I think Grace is so much more than all of these things. More intentional than luck, more selfless than forgiveness, yet to truly pin it down – oh I’m just not sure. I guess in essence it love - unconditional love in action.