When Job’s life is about to be taken away from him, he can say one of two things. He can curse God, as he is tempted to do, and say, “God, why not fifty-one years of life?” Or he can surrender to love and say, “God, why even fifty years?” Why did I deserve life at all? When we take on that attitude, we’ve made a decision for grace.
“Naked I came into the world, and naked I will leave,” Job says (Job 1:21). What do we have, brothers and sisters, that has not been given to us? All is grace. All is given. Who gave me this hand? Who wiggles these fingers? Who created these eyes which I cannot explain or understand? I cannot even make this hair grow. It is all gift.
From beginning to end, everything is grace, everything is given. There is nothing that we have a right to or that we deserve.
– Richard Rohr
I read this Richard Rohr quote last night on Facebook. It was both what I wanted to read and what I didn’t want to read. It was probably what I needed to read. In the midst of a difficult week, month, year, I needed to be reminded that my life is full of gift, full of grace. That is the beautiful reality that all of us live in.
So I enter Thanksgiving this year with both an honest recognition of the difficulties in life, and a renewed realization that my life is full of grace. My life itself is a grace. I have a tremendous amount to be thankful for … far more than I deserve. It is all gift.