In a world filled with people who have something to prove, grace can be tough. Especially when so many women are attempting to show that they are on equal playing fields with men. However, I’m learning that grace is a virtue, it is the essence of strength. There are two types of strength covert and overt. Overt strength is what you see outwardly. An example would be large muscles on a person. Covert strength is seeing someone who appears to be puny pick up a very heavy object. Their strength is hidden but is still there.
This is how grace works. Grace is covert in that it is like the essence of one’s being. Grace moves silently but its actions are always visible. So many people struggle with grace because they’ve been taught that grace is synonymous with weakness. That is a lie! Grace is equivalent with power. Women we are called to be gracious, to be kind and to be meek. Meekness is power under control. In the same vein, grace is judgment under control.
Have you ever been speaking with a person who was confiding in you and they told you something that they did. In your mind you want to scream “what were you thinking?!!” What would have been the possible consequences of that action? Well you could the potential to hurt the individual who confides in you. You also have the opportunity to damage the friendship. There is a chance that you can come across as judgmental too. All these things are dangerous and not productive to the person. In fact, you might stunt their growth and hurt them more than the situation has. Instead, you have to practice the art of listening. In order to do this you must pay attention, take notes if you have to as well. This action not only validates their existence but lets them know that you have a response.
While every conversation does not require this, it does require you to have a level of grace and patience. Don’t be so quick to speak. God gave you one mouth and two ears for a reason. Grace is beauty, it’s masterful, it’s what we are called to have. Being gracious with others is important but being gracious with ourselves is even more of the essence. I know I am generally hard on myself. I don’t excuse my actions, I don’t pretend or use the phrase “I’m human” either because I don’t think I need to state the obvious. However, I do need to be more patient with myself sometimes. I have to consistently remind myself that mistakes will happen to an imperfect mortal but my reaction is key.
I encourage you to act more gracious today and everyday. Don’t be so quick to snap and go off on people. You will be surprised how much your perspective might shift.