Pinches and Grace

Today is Beautiful

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. — Hebrews 4:16

Thought for the Day: Today is a beautiful time for grace.

I wanted to pinch the two girls sitting on the front row of our church service. Pinch them, I tell you. But they were five rows ahead of me, and my arm couldn’t quite reach. Since I couldn’t physically get their attention, I prepared my “look.” You know, the one that says a thousand corrective statements with just a cross expression and a raised eyebrow? Yes, that one.

The minute one of them stole a glance in my direction, they were gonna know exactly how I felt about their wiggling and obvious lack of attention during the service. Oh, and might I mention, these two girls belonged to me. Well, at least one of them did. The other was my daughter’s friend, who sometimes goes to church with us.

I don’t think anyone else really noticed them. They weren’t being disruptive to other people. But they weren’t acting the way I wanted them to. I wanted them sitting up straight, drinking in the message, and taking pages of notes. Thank you very much.

Suddenly, an annoying little thought started to tug at the corners of my mind.

You want your children to act perfectly because it makes you look good. Let that go. [tweet this]

They don’t need to be sitting up straight, furiously taking notes, to hear God’s message. This is a beautiful time for grace. And when you give grace . . . you won’t come unglued.

Ouch.

I don’t much like the Holy Spirit speaking to me the kind of truth that hurts. I was in the mood to pinch somebody. Two somebodies. Give grace? Now? It wasn’t what I wanted, but it was exactly what I needed to do in that moment.

Soon my daughter’s friend peered back to look at me. Despite my feelings, I made the choice to smile, wink, and give her a little wave. Then this wiggly, usually not-very-affectionate middle schooler got out of her seat, walked back the aisle five rows, threw her arms around me, and gave me a hug that preached a thousand sermons right then and there.

Indeed, grace was exactly what was needed in that moment. And that’s what makes this parenting thing so stinkin’ hard. There are really no textbook answers.

Only God can prepare me with the wisdom and discernment necessary for each and every potentially unglued parenting moment.

It’s such a moment-by-moment balancing act of loving, shepherding, disciplining, extending grace, molding, modeling, loving some more, and maybe having to give a few pinches along the way too.

God, I pray that today You would give me the strength to stay close to You to experience Your grace and give Your grace. Open my eyes to the challenging situations around me that need a dusting of Your grace. Amen.

Excerpted with permission from Unglued Devotional by Lysa Terkeurst, copyright Zondervan.

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Your Turn

Oh, how we need God to give us grace for those wanna-pinch moments! We need a deep relationship with Him so that we hear and respond to those truths that hurt. How about you? We would love to hear your comments and thoughts on our blog! ~ Devotionals Daily

Lysa TerKeurst

Lysa TerKeurst is president of Proverbs 31 Ministries and the New York Times best-selling author of Uninvited, The Best Yes, Unglued, Made to Crave, and 16 other books. Lysa was recently awarded the Champions of Faith Author Award and has been published in multiple publications such as Focus on the Family and CNN online. Additionally, she has appeared on the Today Show as one of the leading voices in the Christian community. Each year, Lysa is a featured keynote presenter at more than 40 events across North America, including the Women of Joy Conferences and the Catalyst Leadership Conference. She writes from her sticky farm table and lives with her family in North Carolina. Connect with her at www.LysaTerKeurst.com or on social media @LysaTerKeurst.

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