Remember the WWJD (What Would Jesus Do?) movement? It was certainly full of good intentions. It was a way of remembering that we do not live for ourselves; we live for the one we serve, Jesus Christ. And since we are following Him and He is our example of following the Father, we could figure out what to do in most situations by imagining what Jesus would do in a similar predicament.
It sounds good, and in some instances it might work, but it’s also fraught with interpretation problems. Does the average believer really know enough about Jesus to know what He would do in most situations, or are we just assuming what Jesus might do based on the fact that He was perfect and holy and always did the right thing? Is the Jesus in our mind really the Jesus of the scripture, or just our idea of the perfect Christian? The religious leaders of His day didn’t think much of the real Jesus. They found fault with a lot of what He did. In other words, what Jesus did was open to interpretation. It wasn’t a given — an obvious consistent thing. Jesus was not “nice.”
Secondly, Jesus defied convention and Jewish legal practice. You actually never quite knew what Jesus was going to do. He purposely did this. He always kept people guessing. He made people think by not always doing the expected thing. Jesus kept everyone off balance.
But my wife, Marti, came up with a new version of this that I think might work a lot better. It is the idea of WWGD (What Would Grace Do?) — Grace being the personification of God’s grace toward us, resulting in that grace being turned outward towards others. If God’s grace were operating in a given situation, what would it do (or more rightfully, cause us to do)? That should be a lot easier to determine.
Grace is an attitude, and an action, and because of that, one can imagine how Grace might behave in a given situation. How Grace would behave translates to what would I do if I were an agent of God’s Grace toward others?
We know some important things about Grace. We know that Grace forgives. Grace hopes. (Dan Russell, our Blogtalkradio guest last night, suggested that if you saw someone being hopeless, you should go over and put your arm around them.) Grace, like love, believes. Grace gives people a second chance. Grace treats everyone with equal respect. Grace forgives. Grace doesn’t hold grudges.
There is no condemnation with Grace — no judgment — no keeping track of wrongs, no assumptions, no categories, no social status. There’s not even good people and bad people; there are just sinners who have had God’s grace bestowed on them by Christ. Some people know that, some don’t; Grace treats everyone the same, proclaiming God’s grace to all and announcing the kingdom is here.
WWGD? Try it today and tell us how it goes.
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