It was really, really hot out. The combination of humidity and high temperature made the day seem oppressive, and because of that I was dreading the long walk from my car to my office. Usually when I ran late I had to park in the way, way, way back of the lot and trudge with a day’s worth of gear. It was actually a pleasant walk on when it wasn’t 197 degrees out with 561% humidity. But on that day I had no desire to to get all sweaty and sticky in my work clothes.
I pulled into the parking lot berating myself for needing gas, hitting traffic, and taking that extra 30 seconds to brush my teeth. And at the same time I was inwardly cringing as I prepared to hike into work. Blech. “Really, it’s your own fault you’ll end up a sweaty mess. You need to get your act together, maybe get some super powers that allow you to fly over the traffic. Something. Anything to make yourself BETTER.”
On a whim I drove past the last row of cars, I kept going, and going, right to the front row. And there, like a precious gift from the heavens, was an open spot right in front of the door. I pulled my car in, silently thanked Jesus, and realized that this goodness was administered a lot like grace.
Grace? Where does that fit into a story of sweat and tardiness? One way to define grace is ‘getting what we don’t deserve’, and that parking lot, a gift in the midst of my disorganization and lateness, was exactly what I did not deserve. Similarly, God desires to shower us with good things, not because we’ve ‘earned’ them, but because they are a magnificent demonstration of His love for us.
I don’t need to earn grace. In fact, I can’t. The Bible says, “but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
Being late for work meant that I didn’t deserve a prime parking spot, and yet I got one. In the same way, we’re each sinners, but in spite of our sin God sent His Son, Jesus, to take our punishment, to extend grace to us, so that we could be made right with God.
Rest in the fact that God desires to give you so much more than you deserve, and when you feel unworthy, remember that He has a parking spot in the front of the lot saved just for you! 😉
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights…” James 1:17