That made me think about grace. God supplies what we lack in perfection because of our sin. Only the ratio is backwards—I am sure He allows at least one hundred pounds of grace for every four pounds of our faith and obedience, probably far more.
We also make such allowances for each other. When we know someone has been through a rough time, it is easier to take their snappy comment with equanimity. When we love as we ought, our love covers a multitude of sins, 1 Pet 4:8.
However, the need to make allowances for things like that should eventually disappear as we all grow to maturity in Christ. Shouldn’t a man who has been a Christian forty years no longer be watching and waiting for the Bible class teacher or preacher to make a comment he can raise a fuss about? Yet how many times have I heard young preachers told, “It’s just old brother So-and-So. That’s just the way he is.” Why is he still that way? Hasn’t anyone told him how much he hurts people with that behavior? I wonder how many young preachers were expected to make so many allowances for so many things that they just gave up preaching. Why doesn’t anyone make allowances for them?
Is old sister So-and-So still managing to take offense at everything anyone says and jumping on them with both feet? Hasn’t anyone told her that she is wrong to treat people that way? Oh yes, I know what they will hear back, but we are not doing her any favors to let her keep on this way. The Lord certainly won’t make allowances for it.
But the larger question for me is this: are people continually making allowances, “tret,” for me? Am I the one causing consternation, making people walk on eggshells around me, and stealing everyone’s pleasure with my bad attitude? God’s grace works for people who are trying their best to do right and still fail, not for those who make a career out of bitterness, criticism, and cynicism and expect everyone, including God, to just accept it.. My “tret” should become smaller and smaller as I mature as a Christian, leaving infancy behind and becoming full-grown.
Where do I stand today? A 50 year old baby is no longer cute, and to take the grace of God for granted in such a way must surely be an abomination to Him.
For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has spurned the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace? Heb 10:26-29.