2 days ago, Peter and Lucas had an exchange while I was gone including some disobedience that ended in "no t.v. for 2 days". We were heading out that night and leaving the 2 boys alone. My plan was for them to watch a movie together, but that was before the infraction. Lucas knew that the original plan had to be changed and he was totally understanding why. We really are very consistant about following through with consequences. Once we set them, we do them. We know we can't be wishy washy, particularly with him. But, we are in a place now of also offering "Grace" once in a while as long as we do it purposefully and not flipantly.
So we sat down with Lucas and talked through the whole issue. He knew all the consequences and understood his issue and asked for forgiveness, etc. Then Peter told him he wanted to offer him "Grace". We asked Lucas if he understood what that meant. Seriously, I don't remember sitting down and formerly defining it for him. We've used the word, but I'm not sure I've defined it.
So, we weren't sure he would understand the difference between Grace and just being "soft" on our disipline.
Peter said, "Do you know what Grace is?"
And without hesitation, Lucas said "Yes, Grace is getting another chance"
We looked at eachother and were stunned at his unhesitant response.
"Yes, Lucas that is it"
Since he knew the definition of it, we were able to offer it to him with the understanding that this was really a "gift" to him. He was so happy. At first he didn't want to accept it. I thought that was interesting. But, then he did, and it was a very sweet moment.
We like to offer Grace to our kids sometimes because it has freely been offered to us, through the blood of Jesus and his work done on the cross.
Sometimes the best way to show that to kids is through real life examples.
In the Bible the word used for it is "Charis" -- the definition (according to the Blue Letter Bible.com) is as follows:
that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness:
good will, loving-kindness, favour
thanks, (for benefits, services, favours), recompense, reward
There's even more to the definition than that, but what a sweet gift from the Lord. Why would we not want to offer that to our children even when they make mistakes sometimes? Why is it easier to just drop the strong arm of the law on them and not offer Grace?
God's Word is pretty clear...
and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
2 Cor. 12:9
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace,(A)expressed in his kindness(B) to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace(C) you have been saved,(D) through faith(E)—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works,(F) so that no one can boast.
I'm thankful for Grace.
I hope my kids will never take it for granted.
I hope they know it's even more than being given a second chance.
It's a miracle offered to us by God through Christ.
Thank you Jesus!