How would you respond to a group of fellow workers if you were the leader and you poured your life into them, teaching them all you know for three years only to have them disband and go their own way when troubles came? What would you say to them after you were reunited for the first time? Perhaps you might scold them. Perhaps you might sight each one’s offense. At the least you might shame them for their lack of faithfulness and courage.
After Jesus was crucified and raised from the dead He appeared to the disciples. His first words to them were, "Peace be with you!" The word grace means "unmerited favor". When someone loves you unconditionally, without regard to your behavior towards them, it becomes a powerful force in your life. Such was the case for the disciples when Jesus appeared to them. They could have expected reprimand. They got unconditional love and acceptance. He was overjoyed to see them. They were equally overjoyed to see Him.
Jesus understood that part of the training for the disciples was for them to fail Him. It would be this failure that became their greatest motivation for service. It would be failure that allowed them to experience incredible grace for the very first time. It would be grace that would transform them as human beings.
Have you experienced this grace in your life? Have you extended grace to those who have hurt you? Can you let go of any wrongs that have come through friends or associates? The grace you extend may change their life…and yours.