I was thinking about the reasons for some anxiety I was experiencing recently. This was followed amongst many other thoughts by a memory of my experience in church as a child during the fire and brim stone days. For those who do not know this expression this was a culture in which the fear of hell was instilled into you, to encourage you to be a good person.
This I thought was my first memory of grace under siege in my life.
This is contrary to the true nature of the God I got to know subsequently. This God is good and is Love in the true sense of the word, Love.
I recently read that we should not owe each other anything except for love. If we loved each other we would not do anything to harm each other or ourselves for that matter. In other words we will not steal from each other, we would honour our mothers and fathers, we will not kill each other, etc.
Our motivation to do the right thing should be love and not to look good in comparison to a set of man made rules, of what it means to be a good person.
People; children and adults experience pain through abuse, rejection and judgement. Various forms of love or grace under siege. They often respond to protect themselves based on the philosophy that attack is the best defense.
Acting out in children is in the form of “delinquent” behaviour in various forms.
Adults often tend to be more sophisticated by behaving in self-serving ways at the expense of others.
Addiction I am told is also a way to deal with pain, and the foundation thereof is self-rejection.
When grace is under siege we live in a world of scarcity where we compete for security. This security can be in many forms, but the only true security lies in accepting true Grace and Love. Loving myself and others.
We do not have to allow this to continue. We can change the world as we know it in a moment by giving people their due. Their due is love and the love that is referred to here is a doing word. At a minimum be kind. Every person has their share of joy and sorrow. Treat every person with compassion because you do not know what the situation is that they just stepped out of. You can be sure though that grace is or was under siege in their lives at one stage or another.
Let’s keep reminding each other of the abundant nature of Grace by being abundantly compassionate. Yes, I do know that this is a tall order, but it is an Order. I also do not wish to negate that there are consequences to criminal behaviour and so it should be. But even for the worst of us and in us there is abundant Love and Grace.