Meet my friend, Kathy Howard. She will be guest blogging today. I love her 15 qualities of a person of grace. It challenges me and reminds me how to be grace-ful and grace-filled. Kathy has just released a new 9 week Bible Study (her 7th book!) titled Lavish Grace published by New Hope Publishers. Kathy has agreed to do a give-away. To be eligible to receive a free copy of Lavish Grace, please leave a comment on the blog. One name will be selected on Friday.
With faith, hope, and love,
15 Characteristics of a Person of Grace
Would you describe yourself as a channel or a pool of grace? A “channel” shares the grace with others that God has lavished on them. A “pool” hoards all God’s grace for herself, failing to pass along His undeserved loving kindness.
Anytime we find ourselves more “pool” than “channel,” it’s time to reflect again on God’s undeserved grace in our own lives. In his book Putting a Face on Grace,
Dr. Richard Blackaby writes that when we truly grasp its depth we would not dare withhold it from others.
“We are not called to just bathe in grace; we are called to shower it upon others. Grace has not been fully experienced until it is fully expressed to others. The deeper our understanding of grace, the more we see the necessity of making it the fabric of our Christian life.”
Everything we have, everything we are, and everything we will be depends solely on God’s lavish grace working in our lives. When that truth sinks into our hearts and minds, we will live our life as a grateful response to the grace God so generously pours out on us.
Yet sometimes I forget. Often, I am that stagnant pool, hoarding God’s grace like a selfish child. But God calls me to be channel of His grace, not a pool. As someone who receives His constant supply of glorious grace, I should willingly share it with everyone around me.
What about you? Are you a channel or a pool? Use the following characteristics to evaluate whether your words and actions reflect God’s grace to others:
- Doesn’t insist on being right, but seeks to make things right
- Willing to be inconvenienced
- Seeks the welfare of the other person
- Speaks words that build up, not tear down
- Doesn’t demand to be heard, but strives to listen
- Focuses on others needs instead of our own
- Acts with humility, not pride
- Doesn’t keep score
- Looks for ways to help and encourage others
- Freely forgives
- Seeks to understand
- Doesn’t expect a return
- Focuses on the important over the urgent
- Doesn’t pick and choose whom to show grace
- Doesn’t overlook sin, but encourages holiness
Seem overwhelming? Remember, God has given us everything we need to live a life that pleases Him (2 Peter 1:3
). In those moments when it’s hard to show grace to someone else, ask God to help. And remember we did not deserve His grace either.
When do you find it most hard to show grace? What are some things that help you show grace to others?
About Kathy Howard:
Kathy has been teaching the Bible since she fell in love with God’s Word almost 30 years ago. She speaks regularly at women’s retreats and events across the United States and internationally. The author of seven books, including four Bible studies, Kathy writes to have something to do while she eats chocolate and drinks coffee. She has a Masters in Christian Education and a certificate in women’s ministry from the Canadian Southern Baptist Seminary.
In recent years, God has been teaching Kathy more about His abundant grace. Through her own relationships and life experiences, she is learning to extend the grace God has so lavishly poured out on her own life.
On a personal level, Kathy calls herself a “confused southerner.” Raised in Louisiana, she has moved with her engineer husband around the U.S. and Canada. She says “pop” instead of “Coke” and “you guys” as often as “ya’ll.” But she’s still a southern girl at heart!
Kathy and her husband now live in the Houston area and have three children, two sons-in-law, one daughter-in-law and four precious grandsons. When the family gets together there are also five dogs in the mix.
About Lavish Grace:
This post is adapted from Kathy Howard’s new Bible study
Lavish Grace: Poured Out, Poured Through, and Overflowing. Lavish Grace is a 9-week journey with the apostle Paul that helps readers discover God’s abundant grace for their daily lives and relationships. You can find out more about Kathy, her speaking and writing, and find free resources at www.KathyHoward.org.