Grace: It Isn’t Just For Breakfast Anymore

Episcopal priest Robert Capon said: “We are in a war between dullness and astonishment.” The most critical issue facing Christians is not abortion, pornography, the disintegration of the family, moral absolutes, MTV, drugs, racism, sexuality or school prayer. The critical issue today is dullness. We have lost our astonishment. The Good News is no longer good new, it is okay news. Christianity is no longer life changing, it is life enhancing, Jesus doesn’t change people into wild-eyed radicals anymore, He changes them into “nice people.” If Christianity is simply about being nice, I’m not interested. What happened to radical Christianity, the un-nice brand of Christianity that turned the world upside-down?

What happened to the kind of Christians who were filled with passion and gratitude, and who every day were unable to get over the grace of God? ~ Michael Yaconelli

What has happened, Michael? I think we’ve gotten side-tracked. We’ve become a people more passionate about our causes than our Creator. And that has turned us into a very dull lot. Loud, but dull.

As something becomes dull, it begins to lose its light and luster. I think we’ve lost our light, not because we’re passionless but because of what we’re passionate about. We picket and protest and proselytize on the side but we are so over grace. Grace is left for the Mother Teresa’s and a quick pre-meal prayer.

I don’t think it’s possible for me to be filled with passion for the Father, gratitude for His Son, overwhelmed by the grace of His Spirit and live a life of just okay news.

When I opened the package and saw this sweet gift, painted by my friend, I smiled. I smile every time I see it and I see it all the time because it’s hanging right by the door. It’s a reminder to me, all day every day, not to leave home without it.

Grace isn’t just another name for thank-you for this food, it’s a way of living. And it’s never dull.

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About Debbie

A former counselor and public speaker, I'm grateful for many, many things - God's grace most of all!

49 responses to “Grace: It Isn’t Just For Breakfast Anymore”

  1. Debbie says :

    Michael and Greg –
    Thank you for the re-posts.
    As always, I’m honored.
    Debbie

  2. Arlene says :

    Zing!!! Awesome post!!!

  3. katharinetrauger says :

    Very good. Thanks! <3

  4. transformedbythejourney says :

    I nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award
    1. Link back to the person who nominated you: http://transformedbythejourney.com/
    2. Post the award image to your page:
    http://ivonprefontaine.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/very-inspiring-blogger.jpg?w=610
    3. Tell 7 facts about yourself:
    4. Nominate 15 other bloggers and let them know they’ve been nominated:

    • Debbie says :

      Hello Helen –
      How very kind of you! Thank you!
      I’ve been having minimal success with my internet connection of late.
      I hope to visit with you soon!
      ~ Debbie

  5. lutheranladies says :

    Grace: an infinity of astonishment that we’re covered because of grace. Obviously from the comments, some folks are still struck with its absolute wonder.

    • Debbie says :

      Hello luthernladies!
      You are so right – this is one grace-filled group I have the privilege of hanging out with here!
      Warmly,
      ~ Debbie

  6. At Home With God says :

    Oh, grace! We can never know enough about it, never say enough about it. Nevertheless, I want you to know that I really am blessed by your post. I think I’ll definitely be coming back! :)

  7. Debbie says :

    I read this, and maybe just me today, but I want to weep. Where is my passion and my gratitude for grace? I talk about Jesus and write about Jesus, but I want to live Jesus grace more and more and more. God bless you for being our grace motivator! humbled at some of my ungracious moments recently – the other deb

    • Debbie says :

      Dearest Deb –
      Thank you sweet friend for sharing your tender heart.
      I’m continually amazed by your every day grace,
      ~ Debbie

  8. writinggomer says :

    I’m with you!! Great post Debbie.
    Blessings to you

  9. Caddo Veil says :

    Despite the fact that I do have “off days”–most of the time I continue to be So Amazed at how much God loves me, and all that Jesus does with and for me everyday. It’s been 16 months since my big miraculous epiphany, and I still pinch myself–so I think I’ve got plenty of passion, that I’m anything but dull (in my faith walk, or anywhere else). My great wish and prayer for people who are still standing in the shadows (not the Motown song), is that they’d have a slam-bang, no-mistaking-it, revelation like I had. What a huge, priceless gift to realize (especially after being a saved Christian forever) that Jesus LOVES Me; that He didn’t just die so I could go to heaven, but He LIVES so that I can enjoy this life here–ABUNDANTLY. Wow–that’s J-O-Y, and a bag of chips! I’m more than Grateful, more than thrilled–to tell Him every night that I LOVE Him back!! God bless you, Sis Debbie–I love you, too–Caddo

    • Debbie says :

      Oh Cadd0 – you pretty much leave me speechless (in a happy way)!

      “What a huge, priceless gift to realize (especially after being a saved Christian forever) that Jesus LOVES Me; that He didn’t just die so I could go to heaven, but He LIVES so that I can enjoy this life here–ABUNDANTLY.”

      Yes, my dear friend, that realization IS J-O-Y and a bag of chips! :D
      I think it gets to be somehow easier to wait for then and there instead of living in the abundance of His grace here and now.
      You sure know how to be both the candle and the mirror!
      I love you, too!
      ~ Debbie

  10. Heidi says :

    Debbie– You said it! “I think we’ve gotten side-tracked. We’ve become a people more passionate about our causes than our Creator. And that has turned us into a very dull lot. Loud, but dull.”

    In my 30s I knew someone that was so on fire for the causes that her church supported: missions to Africa, pro-life ministries, a soup kitchen… then in my 40s she was equally on fire for saving the whales, PETA, and other creature causes like dog rescuing…then in my 50s she became very active in all things environmental, picketing industries that were moving into her isolated area, joining associations that fought the fight for green …

    What you said is it. Passionate about causes. I had thought she was passionate about Him, but she was just passionate. Period.

    If the object of our passion is not creation, but the Creator, we will be easy to spot. We will be grace-filled because we will be Christ-like. He does not spew condemnation and judgement, unless it’s the self-righteous pharisees, but lets people choose. It’s pretty easy to spot the difference once we know to look for the object of the passion.

    • Debbie says :

      Oh Heidi –
      That’s such a great example. And I’m afraid one that could describe me (well, maybe not PETA – but I did have my causes).
      You’re so right, if the object of our passion is the Creator (and not ‘a cause’) we will be grace-filled because we’ll give what we’ve been so freely given.
      Yes, Grace stands out is a crowd – you can’t miss it! ;)
      Thank you for reminding me to keep checking my passions!
      ~ Debbie

  11. SPTP2011 says :

    I’m with you – Don’t leave home without it
    God Bless

  12. jelillie says :

    Wow! You hit it right on the head! We have traded glitz for grace and causes for Christ. This leaves us with nothing but programs without power. When once again Christ becomes our cause and once again we revel in the glamor of grace we will have embraced the abundant life! Thank you sister!

    • jelillie says :

      or saying that the right way we have traded grace for glitz and Christ for Causes. Is that more betterer? :)

      • Debbie says :

        I’m laughing because I read it “right” the first time. I had to go back and read your comment twice to see what you meant!
        I SO need a proof reader. My dyslexic brain just pops the words in place for me whether they’re really there or not! ;)

    • Debbie says :

      Dear Pastor J –
      Great point – “that leaves us with nothing but programs without power”.
      You’re so right, we just pick ourselves up, brush ourselves off and start all over again… and then wonder why we aren’t making a difference.
      Thank you wise friend,
      ~ Debbie

  13. greenlightlady says :

    I love the painting you pictured here. The words and colors are both beautiful.

    When you’ve been healed of eating disorders, as I was almost 29 years ago, you are grateful for his grace every time you sit down at the table. Table grace takes on a whole new depth and
    meaning!

    Yes, the church needs an inner revival. It has lost its first Love. May it start in me/us.

    starved without Jesus,
    ~ Wendy

    • Debbie says :

      Dear Wendy –
      The next time I “say grace” at a meal, I’ll think of you and rejoice with you.
      Thank you so much for opening this portion of your life for us to learn from.
      Yes, may it start with me/us!
      love and grace to you,
      Debbie
      By the way, the painting was done by my friend Debby at Living in Graceland – I think you might really like what she has to say. :D

  14. Debby says :

    You know I love this, Debbie. Grace sisters we are! <3

    • Debbie says :

      Dear sweet friend –
      I was impulsive and posted w/o first asking you if it was OK that I used your beautiful painting.
      I realized after it was up that your signature was rather clear and I should have asked you first.
      And of course then I lost my internet and it was too late, anyway. ;)
      BUT, since I didn’t – THANK YOU!!!
      I literally see this dozens of times each day and every time it makes me smile – it makes me think of God and of Grace and of you, my dear friend who so kindly painted it for me.
      You’ll never know…
      ~ Debbie

  15. iamnotshe says :

    I N S P I R A T I O N A L , and perfecto timing. I’m feeling some mojo, baby xox

  16. iamnotshe says :

    CLAPPING, CLAPPING, CLAPPING! I want to be a wild-eyed radical GRACE LIVER!!! MORE CLAPPING … rah rah rah.

    I’m not inspired by OK stuff. … I WANT BIG, BOLD, LOVE, OUT THERE. GO FOR IT!!!!

    I’m with you 100% and more on this. GREAT NEWS we want ASTONISHMENT. I’m astonished i’m alive. I’m astonished Jen and I are alive and together again. That’s a miracle right there … and we NEVER forget it … we ALWAYS “say GRACE”, no SING our happiness about it … well, we don’t sing, BUT we do DANCE!!!

    Love you sis, Mel

    • Debbie says :

      Mel –
      Once I quit laughing I may think of an appropriate response…
      Let’s see… Nope. :D
      Oh friend, what we could do if we all had your exuberance and gratitude for life!
      You inspire me right back!
      love and grace to you, dear dancing radical,
      ~ Debbie

  17. fgassette says :

    Great post! AMEN!

    BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!

  18. isaiah43123 says :

    “more passionate about our causes than our Creator.” Wow, that really hit home. I often become frustrated with the silence of the Church on social and political issues. How much more silent are we about sharing His story?
    Keep the Faith!

    • Debbie says :

      Hello there and thank you for stopping by!
      It seems to me that Jesus was extraordinarily passionate – for His Father.
      I’ve come to believe that I need to take a closer look at what I’m passionate about.
      Thanks again for reading and taking the time to share your thoughts,
      ~ Debbie

  19. mtsweat says :

    “living lives of just okay news” may be the new “faith handed down once for all the saints” Debbie. …but I hope not. Challenging words coupled with my currently reading Bonhoeffer’s Discipleship. Catching it everywhere I turn… must be a message in here somewhere? Blessings good friend for a great piece needed greatly… by me!

    • Debbie says :

      MT, my friend –
      I’m always grateful for your thoughtful comments.
      I’m not sure if you can read the signature in the bottom corner of the painting that you and I now share (I was happy to see it on your blog!!) but the artist is our mutual friend Debby (livingingraceland) :D
      It’s been a while since I’ve read Bonhoeffer. I need to get back to him.
      I’ve always loved this quote:
      “We must learn to regard people less in light of what they do or omit to do, and more in the light of what they suffer.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer
      That’s grace!
      ~ Debbie

  20. Lyn Leahz says :

    A beautiful post indeed. Sometimes all of us need reminders. Some of our Father’s biggest messages can be in the simplest little things that might normally go unnoticed by people.

  21. Noel Williams (prhayz) www.prhayz.com says :

    Excellent post Debbie. I tend to agree with the Priest. Many Christians are more enthusiastic about politics and social issues than they are about God. Sometimes it is difficult to tell whose side many of my Christian brothers and sisters are on. Some will even injure other people of differing views.

    • Lyn Leahz says :

      Sometimes we all need to remember that some of God’s biggest messages can be in the simplest packages. Great article.

      • Debbie says :

        Hello Lynn!
        Just found your comment in my Spam but it certainly didn’t belong there! I, too, think that many of God’s messages are so simple, because He knows the limits of His children. Thanks for being here!
        ~ Debbie

    • Debbie says :

      Hello Noel –
      It’s a sad day when our need to be right out weighs our calling to be compassionate, isn’t it? Thank you so much for your perspective here.
      ~ Debbie

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