Before I die, I would like my family to be able to say that I was a woman of GRACE. For some reason or another it's easier for me to extend GRACE to those I don't know as well than those who are the closest to me. Why is that?
Over the years there have been a few women who I have come to know that bring to mind God's GRACE everytime I think of them. Interestingly enough, I also think of the words "STEEL MAGNOLIA" when I think of these women. Their lives have been forged with Jesus through many struggles and hardships, but as they have persevered, they have taken on the very nature of their LORD.
In the book of 2 Corinthians, where our scripture memory comes from, Paul uses the word GRACE repeatedly - before ever getting to chapter 12. He builds up to our memory verse that says, "My GRACE is sufficient...". Here are a few of those verses for you and I to consider as we ask God to TRANSFORM us more and more into women of GRACE.
2 Corinthians 1:12
Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in our relations with you, in the holiness and sincerity that are from God. We have done so not according to worldly wisdom but according to God's GRACE.
2 Corinthians 4:13-18
13 It is written: "I believed; therefore I have spoken." With that same spirit of faith we also believe and therefore speak, 14 because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you in his presence. 15 All this is for your benefit, so that the GRACE that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. 16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Corinthians 8:6-7
...bring also to completion this act of GRACE on your part. 7 But just as you excel in everything-in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us-see that you also excel in this GRACE of giving.
2 Corinthians 8:8-9
8 I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. 9 For you know the GRACE of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich.
2 Corinthians 9:8-11
8 And God is able to make all GRACE abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 9 As it is written:
"He has scattered abroad His gifts to the poor;
His righteousness endures forever."
10 Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. 11 You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.