I’ve had Grace on my mind. Its Jonathan’s fault really. He got me talking about Les Miserables, and that started me thinking about the rich imagery portrayed in the play, how Jean Valjean and Javier so epitomize the difference between the Covenant of the Law and the Covenant of Grace.
Sometimes… When i think about it. I get that feeling. you know the one? I have to stop what i’m doing, and pause for a moment. Because my eyes start to get warm, and emotion wells up from my stomach in a rush. Because Grace is that powerful. Its so rich.
I wish I was better at explaining it to people. I think about my own life, and consider my failures. Because there are so many. A world full of sinners, and a God so holy even the smallest mistake is enough to render us unworthy to even be in His presence. And I consider a love so deep, His love, that it wasn’t enough just to let us fall away, punished righteously. He created me, knowing I would fail, and then gave up His own life for me.
Valjean was a man beaten by the law. you can’t win against it. Its harsh, unyielding and it doesn’t matter why you did what you did. The law doesn’t care. The law doesn’t forgive. The law has no mercy. The law made Valjean bitter, and though he was a prisoner for stealing bread to feed his starving family, he served 20 years.
But Grace. Grace cares. It cares more for you than it does for itself. The Law made Valjean a thief, stealing silver from the one man who had shown him kindness. And that man, a man who understood Grace, being wronged, did not just forgive, but gave of himself beyond anything that could be required. An act inexplicable really. Grace is inexplicable. Grace extends mercy when mercy doesn’t make sense. Grace loves the loveless. Grace will take a man who is bitter, angry, and broken, and make him like itself. Grace made Valjean an honest man, a man who would sacrifice himself on the behalf of others. A man who would know love, who would extend mercy to his greatest enemy, and who would give his life in exchange for the happiness of those he cared about.
And that Grace. It has been extended to us. to me. to you.