Sunday, September 7, 2014

God's Grace And You- and Me.

September 6, 2014

I do not usually start my Spiritual entries with a story, but am today.
I chose to do it  this way because I think sharing the story first will
help us to remember what is important; help us to remember
that which the Lord would not wish us to ever forget.

There was a man whose neighbor was an elderly woman. She'd been a very
good neighbor- he knew her well. This woman was without a husband or
children. Her only companion was a dog, a dog she loved more than anything 

else in the world.  One day, this man was driving home, was very tired, so not
quite as attentive as he should have been and ran over her dog. He felt terrible!
 Shaking, feeling heartsick over what he had done, he dreaded facing the woman.
 But, after taking a few deep breaths, and giving himself a few minutes to regain
 control of his emotions, he picked up the dog and carried it to the neighbor's
 house. Being in poor health, it took a few minutes for the woman to come to 
the door. When she finally did, there stood the man, her dead dog cradled in
his arms.
     "I am so sorry." he told her, tears filling his eyes, his voice shaky.

 "I was very tired, was not as alert as I should have been and hit him. "
     "It's alright." the woman said. "I keep telling him not to chase cars, but

 he did it anyway. If you hadn't hit him somebody else would have. But I can't
 bury him. Would you help me do that?"
   "Of course. "the man said, and promptly dug a hole and buried her beloved 

dog next to the Oak tree. The woman, seeing how distressed the poor man still 
was, patted his shoulder and said," Really. It is alright. "

The man went home, and that night could not sleep; he kept thinking of what

 a horrible thing he had done. He was weighed down with guilt over it; kept 
thinking of how this dear lady would now be forced to go through life without
 her beloved companion.
     "She must have been  in shock." he said to himself. "I don't think she knows

 her dog is really dead." He went to the big Oak tree, where the dog was buried,
 dug it up, and carried it back to the house. When the woman came to the door
he held the dog out to her and asked, "Do you realize what I did? I mean really?
 Do you understand that your dog will no longer be with you?"
   " Yes." she said."
      The man buried the dog again, went home, and again started thinking about

 the woman, about how lonely she'd be without her dog. "Surely, she doesn't
 realize her dog is dead."  he told himself. "She is quite old now, and obviously
 in denial. I have to make certain she knows he is gone. I have too! 
He returned to the Oak tree, dug the dog up and once again showed it to the
     "I am so sorry I killed your dog." he said. " So sorry you will be without 

him now."
     The woman, old as she was, saw the sadness weighing upon him. Again 

she tried to reassure him. "You don't have to keep saying you are sorry
 I know you didn't mean to kill him. And I forgive you." 
Even after hearing she forgave him, the man dug that dog up for two weeks.

 This story is about you- and about me. It is about God's grace, and how 
too many of us don't truly understand what it is, and how it works, which
 is why so many of us are still carrying around so much shame, worry, fear,
 guilt, insecurities. Sometimes we don't even recognize when grace is at 
work in our lives. For instance: The times we've made a mess out of our lives,
 or something really tragic happened, and we keep praying about it, keep 
saying to God "Please Lord, fix this for me. I can't handle this. It's too hard.
 Too much!" 
We have not understood that God is trying to work out some things

 within us. Sometimes God can't answer our prayers because we keep
 talking, pleading, getting in His way, telling him just how we need, 
or want this problem to be fixed. We seldom heed his WORDS to
 "Be still and know I am God."

God is so patient while working with us; has to put up with our fears,

 our  doubts, our  worries, our need to control,  our constant "But Lord,
 what if's?" Think about some of the trials He has seen  you through. 
Messed up as you were  (as we all were), He brought us through, didn't he?  
That is because of God's great love for us...HIS GRACE.

Grace creates masterpieces out of the mess we make of our life.

Grace so changes a man (or woman), that people who have known 
them all their lives scarcely recognize them.
Grace forgives, comforts, directs, restores.
Grace holds us steady and at peace midst the chaos in the world.

Grace is love in action, and there is no love as great as the Lord's.

I shared this story with you because I know that many of you are as 

this man, still carrying around guilt and shame over past mistakes. 
I was this man for many years. It was about three years ago that I realized
 what I was doing. I can't tell you how horrible that made me feel. 
 Jesus gave his life for me, covered my sins by his love- his grace, and yet
 I continued to grieve over all I'd done. My constant grieving, constant
pleading for forgiveness  was as bad as spitting in his face, acting as if
 his sacrifice was worth nothing.
Nobody enjoys reminding us of the horrible things we've done more

than Satan. I determined not to let him do this to me any more.
 Not ever!  There are times still, when he tries to imprison me again by 
reminding me of the, horrible mistakes I made. But each time he 
does, I remind  myself about the man and his dog.
It is my prayer that this story helps some of you realize what I did, 

that the Lord's words are not as ours. When HE says I forgive you 
HE means it. And not only does he forgive us, God says once he
 forgives us he will not remember our sins; they are forgotten.

Hope this story is as great a blessing to you as it was to me.
I pray you may always experience the warmth of God's love, 

the honor of His presence, and the tightness of his embrace.

Love you much,






  1. This was a good sermon today - I don't know what I would do personally with the Grace of God. He loves me at times I don't love myself!

    1. His grace is always at work in our lives Sandie. I can relate to your comment. The one thing no man will ever be able to comprehend is how God can love us so much. ...especially when we are messing up so badly. But he does. And remember dear heart., he promises to finish the work he has started in us We won't always have to struggle to do as we ought. One day things will be the way He'd planned them to be from the beginning. Love you. Have a great day.

  2. I do hope this comment publishes Barb.I have tried and better tried to comment in certain blogs and they just will not publish,Then others I have no problem whatsoever.I wrote a comment three times in your last post and still it would not publish. I am sure your story will help us all understand more,as you pray it will for us.I know God has forgiven me many times.Like you I will not let Satan into my thoughts at all.This post has helped me plenty Barb as your words always do.Take Care God Bless Love you .Kath xx

    1. I'm sorry you have that problem dear heart. I do too with some blogs. It is odd..because some friends tell me sometimes they can post, while many say they can't. If some can post...everybody ought to be able too.
      We are so blessed Kath, to be so loved by God, aren't we? He is so gracious, so kind and patient with us.
      You take care too, my precious friend. I hope so much that before long you'll be feeling much better than you have of late. Hugs and always all my love.

  3. I am sorry I haven't been around much to comment here or FB Had a lot on my plate even as I write this. I came on here to let you know that I have changed to another blog.
    The link below is the blog I am now using. I am yet to read your/this blog and will comment when I have. Best wishes as always Love Sandra/Sarah xxx

  4. Hi again Barb...I've just read this entry. I often think of God. Just recently there's been a bit of upheaval around me and when I think about God I actually feel better and my heavy laden thoughts just sort of dwindle away. Like Kath above has said to me recently 'today's new will become tomorrow's old news' and, she's right Thnx Kath and Thnx to you Barb for this entry it helps a gret deal...Best wishes. Sandra/Sarah/Astra! xxx

  5. What was interesting here was how the man was in denial *himself* about the dog. His guilt and shame forced him to continually remind this poor woman what she already knew too well. Over and over he came back and re-opened that wound. His intentions were dear, very sweet, but....when it's over it's done. So do we do that with our God? Our Love? Do we return to it over and over with the same "I'm so sorry" then come back again with "I really *am* sorry!" God perhaps might be pondering how silly we humans are, in thinking he cannot care for Himself and needs our assurances. Once again, a lovely story with a message - you share what you know, a trait I love in you.

  6. Hi Cathy. I have never forgotten this story, mainly because too many times I have been this man. It was shocking to me, recognizing myself in this story- broke my heart to realize how many times I'd done this to the Lord. Thanks for taking time to read what I write. (((((Cathy)))))