I remember visiting my aunt Bee’s home with my family. At one point we sat down at the dinner table and my aunt asked my father to “say grace.” I watched as my father bowed his head and he began to pray over the meal. I asked my mother later, “What did aunt Bee mean by saying grace?” Mom responded, “That’s just another way of her asking dad to pray, thanking God for the meal.” Her answer sufficed me for a while, but the phrase “Say Grace” haunted me, that is until I got to college.
I had a wonderful Greek and New Testament professor who encouraged his students to examine the meaning of words we us as Christians. While studying other words and phrases I found myself seeking to understand the word grace. One has described meaning of the word grace through an acronym, G=God’s, R=Riches, A=At, C=Christ’s, E=Expense.
As I thought of all the riches and blessings that have come to me through Christ and His sacrifice, I got overwhelmed. I was lead to Ephesians 1:7-20. In that passage Paul points out some of the riches (blessings) that have come to us through Christ. Redemption, forgiveness of sin, wisdom and insight in to God’s will and plan for life, the fact that we belong to God and are sealed, having His Holy Spirit to give us guidance and power in every situation and so much more.
As I thought about these blessings I have been graced with, I found myself speaking them out loud to remind me of them. I then found myself in the frame of mind to see so many additional ways I have been blessed. Doing that made me more aware of God’s presence in my life. He was speaking to me through His word and I wanted to acknowledge Him more and more. This is exactly what James meant when he wrote, “Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (James 4:7-8). I was getting closer to God and God was getting closer to me. I could hear Jesus speaking to me through His Word and my heart wanted to hear Him more.
As Christians we should speak out the graces that God has given us to remind ourselves of them. We should speak out the graces that God has given to declare them to others. We should speak out the graces of God to shut down the devil. We should speak out the graces to shut down the sins of discontentment, self-pity, selfishness and pride.
This month I am going to make a concerted effort to speak out God’s graces consistently. I will make a conscience effort to acknowledge each and every grace the Lord has give me. I will “Say Grace”!