Living in the Pacific Northwest, I am surrounded by mountains. They are beautiful, especially this time of year when they are dusted with snow revealing the intricacies of their form. However, mountains can be distractions or even hinder us when we are trying to travel to a destination that they are in front of. Especially, when snowfall has made that road treacherous and challenging.
We may find ourselves moving in a direction only to discover there are hurdles we must jump over to get to our desired destination. Now before you start thinking I am only talking about goals, those obstructions can come between us within our relationships and our walk with the Lord as well. Grace is our best option when facing difficulties that come into our day to day lives.
“Then he said, “This is God’s message to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord Almighty—you will succeed because of my Spirit, though you are few and weak.’ Therefore no mountain, however high, can stand before Zerubbabel! For it will flatten out before him! And Zerubbabel will finish building this Temple with mighty shouts of thanksgiving for God’s mercy, declaring that all was done by grace alone.”*” Zechariah 4:6-7 (TLB)
Grace~ God’s favor and benevolence to us.
God’s grace. There is a lot of understanding of what it means to walk and receive God’s favor in our lives. The free gift of salvation is likely associated with grace and mercy purchased for us by Jesus on the cross. But do we grasp the concept of His benevolence connected to operating in grace. Each of us is given the unexpected gift of salvation and God’s presence but we are also given the assistance to walk each day with confidence. God’s mercy was extended to save us, but God’s grace stretched out to support us. Whatever mountains that are before us or challenges we face, our response partnered with grace, will succeed. Our weakness is only a strategy for God to show up and make that mountain a mole-hill.
Grace grounds us to truth and empowers us for holy living.
I was visiting with a friend who is walking through a difficult season and she shared with me an occasion where some people misunderstood a decision she had made. She realized she could be offended or simply see them in the best light concerning the situation. She chose grace. She chose to look beyond the mountain of offense and allow the Spirit of God to flatten it out. Her circumstances didn’t change, but her heart did. My dear friend allowed for the Lord to level her mountain instead of taking matters into her own hands and possibly creating a bigger problem. She gave them the benefit of the doubt concerning her trouble and extended grace by being kind. Her actions and obedience to God shouted out grace allowing for an opportunity to build up others rather than tear them down.
Grace transforms us by changing our desires and motivations.
I don’t really see myself as one who is driven. However, I can be stubborn and press toward a desire ahead of God’s timing. You know what the result of that is? Mountains, obstacles, hinderances and ultimately, frustration. The aspirations are not wrong and the fervor isn’t necessarily sinful, but the motivation might need a little adjustment. Or maybe the timing is perfect but God wants to show us that its not about our accomplishments or ability. He simply wants to reveal His power working through us. Our motivation shifts from performance to giving and bringing God glory. Either way, our shout or declaration of “grace” to the “mountain” reveals where our strength comes from and enables us to walk forward into His purpose.