Not me, but the Lord

Not me, but the Lord

Acts 4:33b-34

And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales

Again God brings me to a verse I would never have picked. I feel like I’m at the starting line of a race, but instead of starting the race my coach keeps pulling me aside and saying, “you know where you are going right, you know you are supposed to run right.”

And now, at the last second before the starting pistol fires, my coach takes off my sneakers.  It was God’s grace powerfully at work in them???  This wasn’t something they learned, or a behavior they practiced.  This wasn’t even anything they did, as if it wasn’t about them at all.  It was always about God.  Their grace was God’s grace working through them.

It is never easy, I accept that.  No matter how nice three steps sound in a sermon on Sunday, I don’t learn to rely on God in three steps.  Learning to live a life of grace is going to mean learning to let God shine through me.  I’m afraid that is much more difficult than learning the right interaction techniques for working with difficult people.

So to recap, I’ve learned that it isn’t enough just to treat people nice, I want my interactions with them to leave them more beautiful.  I’ve also learned that seeking grace is about my actions, not other people’s reactions. Finally, I have learned that the grace will not come from me or anything I do, but will be a work of God through me.

What have you learned this week?

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Jennifer Vanderlaan CNM MPH is the author of the website. She has been working with expectant families since 2000, training doulas and childbirth educators, and midwives. She has worked with midwives in Central America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Her interest in public health grew in 2010, and she is now a PhD student in a nursing program learning to become a producer of knowledge.

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