“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.” 2 Corinthians 4:7

When Jesus went to wash Peter’s feet he initially said, “you shall never wash my feet” and then in the very next verse he says “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well”. Peter has gone from one extreme to the other. The tendency to go from one extreme to the other is not unique to Peter.

On the one hand we want God to take over our lives completely and just do everything for us. On the other hand we put pressure on ourselves by thinking that a Christian should be busy doing good things. Of course, the answer lies somewhere in the middle but where?

God wants to instruct us, guide us and be with us. He is Lord but he doesn’t swallow us up in a take over bid. He shines through our temperament and personality, like treasure in jars of clay. Neither do we have to weary ourselves trying to please Him. If we are His children, He is already pleased with us.

The middle ground is to live by grace. God’s grace is not only available to save us but also available so we can live the Christian life. Yet grace is sometimes difficult to accept. Free gifts are not as easy to receive as one might think. Flannery O’Connor said, “All human nature vigorously resists grace because grace changes us and the change is painful”. Painful because grace changes our perception of ourselves. We are not as self-sufficient as we thought. Nevertheless we need to avail ourselves of grace on a daily basis and it is ours for the asking. Simply ask.