Saturday, April 20, 2013

Infinite Grace 1

420 is Hitler's birthday anniversary. In more recent years, the week of April 15 - 20 has been sheer horror, filled with deadly wounds: Waco Seige, Oklahoma City Bombing; Columbine; Virgina Tech shootings; and Boston Marathon terror. Rather than dwell on these dark events, led by the Holy Spirit, I have decided to focus on grace. God's grace is ever present. The Bible tells us that Divine Grace is infinite. Also, God's illimitable grace fills us with peace, much needed.

Grace is a very meaningful word and rich in theological significance. It comes from French/Latin gratia, gratus for pleasing, used to denote thankfulness. The Greek word for grace is charis meaning unmerited mercy and blessings. Grace is central to Christian theology. 100 of the 154 occurrences of the word charis in the New Testament occur in the Pauline Epistles, in all thirteen of them, and most often found in Romans and Corinthian letters.In Hebrew, the basic sense of charis is favor and loving kindness. God and Jesus Christ act in loving-kindness and undeserved favor toward humanity. This is divine grace, including the grace of salvation. There is also human grace, as Paul makes clear when he writes about thanksgiving, giving to a collection, offering, or in greetings of grace, and gracious, encouraging words towards others that are of spiritual benefit. Some scholars have gone further and suggested that charis, when used by Paul, isn't just an attribute, it means God himself.

Today, I was able to capture, with my camera, a moment of grace among The Borage and the Bees.

Please click on the link above to see the full photograph. Borage is a herb, plant growing in my garden, 3 feet tall and almost as wide. Ponderous with stalks of flowers ready to bloom, it is a magnet for honey bees, amazing pollinators and critical eco-system managers, that concerned folks tell us are on the verge of disappearing. Yet, here they are, alive, happy, busily buzzing away bees, and filling me with hope and joy. I didn't know borage attracts bees! Nor did I know that borage re-seeds itself every season; a total grace now that I am unable to garden. How on earth are the bees finding my urban garden? Where do they come from?

The borage in my garden and the bees grow by grace. May we too grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. (II Peter 3.18 NRSV).

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