Gazing out my window on a recent late-night flight, I was struck by how many stories there are out there, so many broken dreams and shattered promises. So many ways we hurt each other, wound creation, self-destruct.
Not one of us, even the best among us, can say with a straight face that we’ve no regrets. We hope that in the end our lives have done more good than harm, but we’ve succumbed to selfishness, we’ve nurtured greed, we’ve not loved our neighbor as ourselves.
And here we encounter that old, sturdy, often overused-but-rarely-embraced word: grace. Grace is dangerous, risky. We fear it’s too good to be true. Grace unravels all the shame we hide, all the failures we keep at bay, all the ways we’ve screwed up. And screwed up again.
Grace is the father watching out the window after we’ve run off with the Chevy and the family stash. Grace is the smile waiting behind the door that is always, always open. Grace is delighted laughter when we feared rejection, a warm embrace when we feared distance or reprisal.
So each night when we put our head on the pillow (or try to catch a wink on the red-eye), we rest in the good news that God (not our worst mistakes) tells our story.
And the story is grace.