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“Make sure that no one misses out on God’s grace”

May 11, 2024

Daily Scripture

Hebrews 12:12-15

12 So strengthen your drooping hands and weak knees! 13 Make straight paths for your feet so that if any part is lame, it will be healed rather than injured more seriously. 14 Pursue the goal of peace along with everyone—and holiness as well, because no one will see the Lord without it. 15 Make sure that no one misses out on God’s grace. Make sure that no root of bitterness grows up that might cause trouble and pollute many people.

Daily Reflection & Prayer

“I sense, in fact, that is why any person goes to church: out of hunger for grace…. As I look back on my own pilgrimage, marked by wanderings, detours, and dead ends, I see now that what pulled me along was my search for grace. I rejected the church for a time because I found so little grace there. I returned because I found grace nowhere else.” *

The letter called Hebrews appealed to its original readers to hold fast to the faith in Jesus they had adopted as their own. It went to Hebrew Christians who faced the pressure of social and political persecution and might consider giving up their faith. In today’s passage, a summary near the end of the letter, the writer clearly linked pursuing holiness and pursuing peace. Those were in no way polar opposites between which Christians had to choose—holiness and peace were part of the same God-given mission. And both those qualities were rooted in the reality of God’s grace, which allows us to keep moving forward spiritually even when we’ve fallen short of the standard of holiness and creates the climate in which we can live at peace even with the annoying different humans we always seem to encounter. So, “make sure no one misses out on God’s grace.”

  • “Mark Twain used to talk about people who were ‘good in the worst sense of the word,’ a phrase that, for many, captures the reputation of Christians today. Recently I have been asking a question of strangers—for example, seatmates on an airplane—when I strike up a conversation. ‘When I say the words ‘evangelical Christian,’ what comes to mind?’ In reply, mostly I hear political descriptions: of strident pro-life activists, or gay-rights opponents, or proposals for censoring the internet. I hear references to the Moral Majority, an organization disbanded years ago. Not once—not once—have I heard a description redolent of grace. Apparently that is not the aroma Christians give off in the world.” ** Does that seem right, or does it break your heart? How can you become a “grace dispenser” to those you know, making sure that no one misses out on God’s grace?


O God, I would not be the person I am had you not dispensed your grace so generously to me. Help me keep growing into a grace dispenser for all the people around me. Amen.

GPS Insights

Picture of Leah Swank-Miller

Leah Swank-Miller

Leah Swank-Miller serves as Director of Student Ministries at Resurrection Overland Park. A Kansas native, she has been a professional actress for nearly two decades, and she loves to see the vastness of God’s creation through theatre and the arts. Leah just graduated yesterday with an M.Div. degree from Saint Paul School of Theology, but she was already writing at a graduate level when she wrote this post in 2022. Leah, Brian, and their two children love to play tennis, golf, soccer, and board games.

“Are you fully aware that only a church that, like Jesus, welcomes ‘sinners’ can truly welcome you?”

This is a powerful question. It’s layered. Are you “fully” aware? This requires more than scholarly knowledge. It requires a lived experience of that knowledge. Jesus welcomes sinners, which means he welcomes you. Does your church, small group or spiritual community welcome sinners? Do you? And when you picture a “sinner” do you picture yourself?

In recent years, whenever reading a Scripture passage referring to Pharisees, I place myself in their shoes. Because really, we’re not that different. They are certainly not the enemy–they are just misguided. I too have been misguided in my life. Perhaps you can relate. Participating in this practice helps me to not create the “us/them” narrative. It also helps me hold myself to the same set of standards I expect from those around me.

Do I, like the Pharisees, have issues with the different ways God welcomes, forgives and heals all people, not just physically but mentally and emotionally as well? Would I say “yes” if God asked me to help in the healing process of those I carry judgments toward? I’d like to say yes, absolutely I would. But I’m reminded of the way I ignore nudges to forgive those who’ve hurt me. And in doing so I’m stalling the way God is graciously wanting to heal me.

I love how Jesus offered a different, personal vibe for different types of people. And yet the purpose was the same for all of them, to let God’s grace heal the physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects of each individual. Because we are all sinners, every last Pharisee, fisherman, disabled and diseased person. And we’re all in need of a healer. Are we ready to welcome the gift of grace? To help make sure no one misses out on it? From one healing sinner to another, I hope so.

© 2024 Resurrection: A United Methodist Church. All Rights Reserved.
Scripture quotations are taken from The Common English Bible ©2011. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

* Yancey, Philip. What’s So Amazing About Grace? Revised and Updated (pp. 28-29). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.
** Yancey, Philip. What’s So Amazing About Grace? Revised and Updated (p. 41). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.