Getting Out of the Way of God’s Grace
Yesterday I talked about the importance of God's grace in our pursuit of holiness. It got me thinking about the fact that many times we prevent God's grace from flowing in our lives.
The River of Grace
God’s grace is like a river that flows in our lives, filling our hearts with all we need to become the best-version-of-ourselves. The problem lies in the fact that many times we are either unaware this river exists or we just ignore it altogether. In some cases it may be that the river has dried up. We see the lives of some of the saints and find it impossible to grasp that we too are called to live lives of heroic virtue and extraordinary holiness.
It is clear to see that the river of grace in their lives is overflowing. God has done amazing things in their lives and we mistakenly think that they are the chosen few. This couldn’t be further from the truth. We were all created for holiness, for sanctity, for sainthood. That means you and I should be saints. A saint doesn’t become a saint all on their own. They became saints because the river of grace in their lives provided them with all they needed to live the life of a saint. They are saints because they lived the life of grace, they walked the walk of faith.
Blocking the River
It’s all about grace. It is only through grace that they were even capable of doing the extraordinary things that they did. They acknowledged the river. They fed the river. They did all they could to allow that river to flow deeply in their lives.
We, on the other hand, often do things to prevent the free flowing of the river of grace in our lives. Primarily, we sin. Contrary to popular belief, sin has consequences. Every time we sin we put another brick in the dam that we ourselves are building right smack dab in the middle of the river. Then we wonder why the river has dried up.
Even if I acknowledge their is a river, I can still keep it from flowing by the things that I do. When we sin, we are no longer in the “state of grace”. We can’t receive Holy Communion. We are cut off from the life giving water of Christ that we so desperately need. That’s why we’ve got to make sure to keep any debris out of the water.
Let the River Flow
It can start small and seem like no big deal, some driftwood here or there doesn’t really seem to effect the flow of the river. But when it all begins to pile up it can cause big problems. All of the sudden the water has stopped flowing and we act like we don’t know why. We practically built the dam didn’t we?
There are times when I can’t seem to figure out why I am stuck in a rut, spiritually speaking. I feel like I’m doing my part—going to Mass, reading the Bible, praying every day—yet I still feel like I’m not growing. Most often, the problem is that I have prevented the river of grace from flowing in my life. I’m paddling up a storm, but there is no water so the boat is not going to move.
Being able to go to Reconciliation and ask for God to forgive our sins is the only way to tear down that dam and clear the debris. We’ve got to cleanse and purify our souls. Then we are open to God’s grace which can flow freely once again. We’ve got to get out of the way of grace and stop impeding it’s wonderful work. God can do amazing things in our lives if we let Him.
We’ve got to get out of the way of God’s grace. We’ve got to let the river flow.