Get What You Deserve

I have to get something off my chest. I’ve been reading article after article about the situation with the NFL and Ray Rice. I just finished an article where Michael Vick has come out and said that everyone deserves a second chance. I decided to scroll down and see some of the comments. I was stunned at the hate directed towards Vick and Rice. I don’t agree with what either of these men have done, but the hate portrayed towards them has hit me hard.

I wrote a post awhile back about hate being wrong, no matter the direction it’s pointed. I’ve come to the conclusion as of late that we all want people to get what they deserve, I mean everyone but ourselves. We live in a world that thirsts for revenge, and wants justice. Except, we can’t agree on what justice is or isn’t but that’s another conversation.

My thought is this…Thank God we don’t all get what we deserve. Thank God I haven’t gotten what I deserve. I’ve hurt those closest to me, disappointed my children, let down my wife, been dishonest, pretended to care, and turned my back on the one I call my Savior. And, that might have just been this week. I don’t deserve the life I have, or ther love I’ve recieved.

What’s changed me is grace. What’s changed me is so much more than a second chance. None of us really want what we deserve. So why are we so angry? It’s easier to yell from behind a keyboard than it is to look someone in the eye who has just made the biggest mistake of their life. I bet our words would be different if we spoke them more than we type them.

I’m convinced that until we truly experience grace, we can’t truly extend it to someone. It’s the broken people that accept the broken. I have some news though, we are all broken.

My cousin died in a car accident over 17 years ago. A college student ran a red light at over 80 miles an hour and slammed into my aunts car. My cousin was only 14 at the time. In the days and months that followed I saw grace like never before. My aunt forgave the remorseful student and showed him grace he didn’t deserve. She gave him his life back by not pressing charges and decided enough lives had already been ruined.

That’s what I’m talking about.

Once you’ve tasted of this kind of love, you are forever changed. My aunt calls herself an atheist, but the kind of love she showed I would define as the love of God. This is the message of God’s love that is missed over and over again. It’s not what we do that makes us deserving of such love. Like I mentioned before, we’d never have that love if we all got what we deserved.

I understand that their are consequences for the choices we make, and we all have to face them. I’m not advocating that no one should ever be punished. I’m just so saddened by the hate I see, and I’m sure many of you are as well. Brennan Manning calls us all Ragamuffins. Simply put, beggars at the door of God’s mercy.

A beggar has nothing to offer, and maybe all of us need to remember we’re nothing more than beggars.

Then, we could show each other the kind of love that’s sets people free.

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