Ann. I just love her. In just the few years I’ve know her, she has taught me much about gracious, grace-filled living. My friend Jill has the privilege of being a companion to Ann two days a week. But Jill is more than a companion…she is Ann’s friend.
Last week Ann called Jill in a panic.
“Jill, there are birds in my house,” she cried. “Please come over and help me find them. I’m so afraid.”
Jill drove over to Ann’s right away. They looked under the beds, in the closets, and behind the shower curtain. As Jill suspected, there were no birds.
After the search, Jill got down on her knees in front of Ann, cupped her face in her hands, and sweetly whispered. “Ann, there are no birds. You have Alzheimer’s disease. That’s what this is about.”
“Oh I do?” she replied. “Thank you for telling me. That explains so much.”
Ann had been told many times that she had Alzheimer’s, but she had forgotten.”
I’ve been thinking about Ann’s response all week. That explains so much.
I’ve been thinking about some of my behavior.
Birds that flap their wings in my thought processes, stir up anxious emotions in my heart, and build prickly nests of less-than-Christ-like behavior.
“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do” Romans 7:15. Yes, Paul, I understand. Me too.
Then I see Jesus in Jill. Cupping my face in His hands and looking me in the eye with compassion and grace.
“Sharon, you live in a sin-filled world. You have been saved from the penalty of sin, but you still live in the presence of sin. As long as you are here on this earth, you will struggle with raw emotions, old habit patterns, and human weaknesses yet to be transformed by the Holy Spirit. You will never be perfect this side of heaven. Don’t beat yourself up when you aren’t. That’s what My grace is all about.”
“Thank you, Jesus, for reminding me,” I reply. “That explains so much.”
He’s told me that before, but I forget. Grace.
I wonder if you have forgotten too?
On those days when you’ve messed up.
When your actions have been less than you had hoped for at this point in your walk with God.
When your emotions have been batting their wings and stirring up dust in your heart.
Jesus is telling you today. Remember…Grace.
Before Jill left to return home, Ann asked, “Can we pray together before you go?”
“Yes, I’d love that,” Jill replied.
And in Ann’s final words of their time together, Ann prayed, “Jesus, no matter what I forget in the future, help me to never forget how much I love You.”
If you need an extra dose of GRACE today, leave a comment below.
I’m almost hesitant to include newsy stuff at the end of such a poignant moment as you ponder God’s grace poured out for you, but there are some things coming up I’m dying to share.
My book, What God Really Thinks About Women: Finding Your Significance in the Women Jesus Encountered, is being released October 1. The new title will be, How Jesus Broke the Rules to Set You Free: A Woman’s Walk in Power and Purpose. The new version will have a shorter version of the Bible study included in the book, but the basic content will be the same. I couldn’t be more excited about this new title! It is already available on amazon.com for pre-order.
Right now, I have about 60 copies of the current version of What God Really Thinks About Women. I will be selling the book and study guide combination for $9.99 (previously $19.99) and the book for $8.99 (previously $13.99). This reduced price will be as long as supplies last.