Grace without guilt

I have a hard time accepting grace without guilt.

I’ve always known what a kind-hearted, selfless man I married. I’ve known it for at least 12 years. But having babies with that man has amplified what a kind-hearted and selfless man he truly is. Seeing him care for me, Lily, and Scott while handling all the other responsibilities he has on his plate is the closest picture of love anyone can display next to the love of Christ.

Brent does so much for me and his reason is always the same, “Because I love you”.

But I always fear that one of these days he will resent me. He’ll add up all the things he’s done for me and find that he has more tally marks than I do and he’ll resent me. I fear he will compare the two of us and find that I fail him miserably more than he fails me. I fear he’s going to get so worn out giving and giving and giving to his family that one day he’ll just throw his hands in the air and say “I quit.” I fear he’s always waiting for me to return the favor, to make equal the list of things we’ve done in one day.

He pours out all of himself for me and the kids day in and day out. It’s all grace and it’s all because he loves us. But it leaves me feeling guilty. Like I’ll never be as good to our family as he is.

I must remember that he’s not that kind of man. He’s a man of great integrity, love, faithfulness, and understanding. But more than that, I must remember that it’s not Brent doing all these selfless acts for his family. It’s Jesus.  It’s Jesus loving me through the hands and feet of Brent. That changes everything because the love of Jesus is unconditional. He doesn’t offer grace with a side of guilt (and neither does Brent). Jesus will never resent me. Jesus will never keep a record of who’s done more because He will always have more tally marks. Jesus won’t compare because no one can compare. Jesus can’t get so worn out that He quits. Jesus has a standard of holiness that I can’t live up to without Him. Jesus will always offer me grace because that’s just what He does.  He will continue to give me what I don’t deserve because that’s Who He is.

And His reason is the same as Brent’s. Because He loves me…perfectly and infinitely more than Brent.

if we are faithless, he remains faithful–for he cannot deny himself. 
2 Timothy 2:13

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