Over the years, as I've sat with, studied, and reflected on the meaning of GRACE, I've come to the conclusion that guilt is a much easier foundation - and it's hard to be grace-filled and guilt-filled at the same time! If guilt is my foundation, I don't have to give favor to those I selfishly deem undeserving. I can blame. I don't have to forgive. I can also hold back - my guilt tells me that I'm not good enough, not worthy, that everything I do has a consequence that makes it just not worth it to step up or out. Guilt allows me to wallow rather than risk. Guilt is all about me.
Grace asks a LOT of me! Grace asks me not to judge others, but rather understand that everyone is doing the best they can. Grace asks me to forgive and love, only and above all. Grace asks me to not only give others a break, but to give myself a break too! Grace asks me to study Jesus' character and to ever-strive to close the gap between mine and His. Grace is all about others.
Martin Luther says we are at the same time 100% saint and 100% sinner. Likewise, I think we are 100% guilt and 100% grace. Which means I should have grace toward myself during those times when guilt chooses to invade my core and be my foundation.
Thank God for GRACE!