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EGR – Extra Grace Required?

Second: I imagine this pastor (yes, the one I never met, the one my friend told me about, the one I have turned into the object of my own creation) has read Ephesians 4:7, “But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift”, and decided that grace comes prepackaged from Heaven, small, medium, large, and EGR. Yet I pause at the phrase according to the measure of Christ’s gift and wonder how we measure the Lord’s gift—or even what that gift is, precisely. I wonder what size gift comes from an infinite God.

Finally, this pastor had it backwards: difficult people do not require extra grace, I do. The problem is not their requirement: it is my lack. When the depth of human need is beyond the limits of my patience and empathy, when the hurt and fear goes deeper than my ability to pray it away, when I reach the boundaries of my Christlikeness, I am the one who needs the fuel of grace. I am the one who needs grace to listen to others without the urge to move on to the next patient. I am the one who needs to see Jesus in the face of each difficult, hurting person. I am the one who requires not extra grace, but the real thing, the true supernatural substance from Heaven: the grace of God. Ministry based upon my own resources will produce disciples that look like me, and that fearsome thought should be reason enough to cry out for grace to sustain me.

Extra Grace Required? Well, yes: for me.