That Unforced Rhythm of Grace

by kerriebutterfield

First Dance
by Elizabeth Anne
Flickr.com_2666924472_c85810c260_CC BY_ND 2.0

I regularly pray that people would be embarrassed by God’s affection and goodness–become a billboard for the goodness of God. My heart is that people would see Papa God’s nature on display, and God would get the glory. When I pray this I often picture a teenager embarrassed by a public display of affection; enjoying the love but completely self- aware, and wondering what people watching might be thinking. My husband also prays daily for our family that any areas that are uncomfortable with Papa God’s love would be revealed and transformed by love. A few weeks ago these two prayers had a beautiful collision.

We had been casually looking to buy a home for a year and half after we received a prophetic word from a friend that God would hide a house for us and the price would continue to drop until we could afford it. We loved living in the church parsonage but we also wanted to partner with God’s heart for us, so every once in awhile we would have a look and see what was on the market. After 20 months of window shopping, I found one that seem to tick a lot of boxes for our family and it had been on the market for three years, dropping drastically in price. I wasn’t familiar with the location so my daughter and I decided to take a drive and have look around. As we drove onto the street I realized we were in a VERY nice neighborhood. A neighborhood we shouldn’t be able to afford. So nice, it was making me uncomfortable. I thought to myself, “We cannot live here. It’s way too nice. What are people going to think?”

As soon as I said that, I felt God remind me of the prayers Kevin and I have prayed and Holy Spirit said, “I think we found a place in your heart that is uncomfortable with my grace and love. My love is extravagant and I want to lavish it on you. Are you willing to receive it?”

It took me a minute to say, “yes” and the uncomfortable feeling didn’t go away immediately. Honestly, every once in awhile a wave of guilt at being given such a lavish gift from God hits me and I become the awkward teenager who doesn’t know how to receive or reciprocate affection. God is so patient and kind with me as the place where I resisted His love begins to respond to His love. Right now, I’m choosing to slow down when those moments happen, to just say thank you and enjoy Him. I’m letting Him lead the great dance of love, where grace makes room for me to receive from Him what I need, desire, and all He longs to be for me.

I’m learning the “unforced rhythms of grace” in which I stand on Papa’s toes, eye’s fixed on Him, as we walk and dance. I’m learning the dance is about delighting in His presence and not the pressure of performance. I don’t have to be good at this dance to dance with Papa God. I don’t need to know the steps. I just watch Him and put my hands out to receive all He wants to be for me and He teaches me the “unforced rhythm of grace”.