Grace is God’s best idea.
His decision to ravage a people by love, to rescue passionately, and to restore justly—what rivals it?
Of all his wondrous works, grace, in my estimation, is the magnum opus.
- MAX LUCADO
Oh, I think Max Lucado gets it!
Not that his other books haven’t pointed to it for years, but this one looks it straight in the eye and never blinks.
And don’t think he’ll give you wimpy grace here. This is the real thing in all its bold, loud, audacious flavors.
Here’s my hunch: we’ve settled for wimpy grace. It politely occupies a phrase in a hymn, fits nicely on a church sign. Never causes trouble or demands a response. When asked, “Do you believe in grace?” who could say no?
This book asks a deeper question:
Have you been changed by grace? Shaped by grace? Strengthened by grace? Emboldened by grace? Softened by grace? Snatched by the nape of your neck and shaken to your senses by grace? God’s grace has a drenching about it. A wildness about it. Grace comes after you. It rewires you. From insecure to God secure.
. . . Grace is the voice that calls us to change and then gives us the power to pull it off.
Page after page, chapter after chapter, Lucado fleshes out what grace looks like in the person of Jesus Christ and all its beautiful aftereffects.
The best review I can give is to step back and let you read more of the words for yourself:
Grace is God as heart surgeon, cracking open your chest, removing your heart—poisoned as it is with pride and pain—and replacing it with his own.
Rather than tell you to change, he creates the change.
Do you clean up so he can accept you? No, he accepts you and begins cleaning you up. His dream isn’t just to get you into heaven but to get heaven into you.
Of all the things you must earn in life, God’s unending affection is not one of them. You have it. Stretch yourself out in the hammock of grace.
You can rest now.
Get the picture? Not yet? Okay, here’s a little more. . .
He dispenses his goodness not with an eyedropper but with a fire hydrant. Your heart is a Dixie cup, and his grace is the Mediterranean Sea.
You simply can’t contain it all.
So let it bubble over. Spill out. Pour forth. “Freely have you received, freely give” (Matt. 10:8 NIV).
Grace. Let it, let him, so seep into the crusty cracks of your life that everything softens. Then let it, let him, bubble to the surface, like a spring in the Sahara, in words of kindness and deeds of generosity.
God will change you, my friend. You are a trophy of his kindness, a partaker of his mission. Not perfect by any means but closer to perfection than you’ve ever been. Steadily stronger, gradually better, certainly closer.
This happens when grace happens. May it happen to you.
After reading this book, if you didn’t appreciate God’s gift of grace before, certainly you can see it clearer now.
Let grace—let Jesus—happen to you, too.
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Day 24 of . . .
THANKS TO THOMAS NELSON
FOR THE REVIEW COPY OF THIS BOOK