When Grace is in the Way

Everybody needs grace in their daily lives, and nobody understands this better than today’s guest. Author and speaker Amy Seiffert has been inviting women to discover God’s grace amidst the messiness of life for almost two decades. As a busy wife and mother of three, Amy has learned the hard way that grace is not gained by striving for perfection, but by understanding our need for rescue. It’s a grace to welcome Amy Seiffert to the farm’s front porch today…

 guest post by Amy Seiffert

Grace had been sitting on my countertop all week, and I didn’t even know it.

In fact, I had found it kind of annoying.

Grace was in the way.

The week was hotter than it should have been for an Ohio October. The sweat bees were everywhere, but the plans had been made: an apple orchard outing with friends.

And it was the last thing I wanted to do.

In any other given October, this outing would have been a highlight. But we had just found out about our oldest son having Crohn’s disease.

Up until this moment, apple orchards represented sweaters, carefree kids, and cozy family memories. But today, frolicking around with buzzy bees, sticky cider, and rows of apple trees felt trite.

My son has an autoimmune disorder for life. Nothing else matters.

Trying to keep some sense of normalcy, we kept to the calendar and arrived at the orchard all in tow.

My younger two innocently ran off to eat apple cider donuts and stick their heads through the cut-out farmer photo displays.

Throughout the afternoon, as they picked their apples, they kept repeating, “Twist and pull. Twist and pull.”

And that was the state of my soul. Twisted and pulled. Nothing was quiet and peaceful.

Our family seemed twisted, pulled, and dropped like a bad apple, left to rot.

And my heart was growing a root of bitterness below the surface.

I have no idea why we decided to fill the biggest bag—an entire bushel. The kind an entire three-year-old can fit into.

But my husband was willing to carry it, so we twisted and pulled and walked and filled.

By God’s grace, we did end up laughing, eating, and ignoring the bees. And as we packed up the kids with their sticky hands and smiles, we shoved our full and overflowing bag of apples in the trunk and went home.

Coming in the door that evening, we were all “shoes off, baths, and bedtime routines.” I heaved the bag of apples onto our concrete countertops and got busy settling in our people for the night.

Over the next few days, my son had tests and blood work, and we made a hard lifestyle choice: a new diet to help put the disease into remission.

We had to make so much food from scratch and completely overhaul our pantry and refrigerator. My countertops became very important work stations. And that huge bag of apples became cumbersome as I slid it around to make space to chop and cook.

Each time I shoved the bushel to the side, I found myself bitter at the bag. What am I going to do with all these apples? Why is this ridiculous bag always in my way?

Just after shoving the apples to a different corner, I turned the page in our new diet book to see the next phase.

I read a line that made me laugh: “This week you can introduce homemade cooked, pureed apples. You’ll need a lot of apples as they really cook down.”

Grace had been sitting on my countertop all week, and I had been shoving it around.

I had belittled and bullied a gift.

And in a moment, that bag of bitterness became an actual saving grace.

God had overflowed my cup in the middle of my mess and showed me that grace looks like sustenance through a special diet for my special child.

Psalm 23 shows us how, in the very presence of our enemies, God will fill our cup to full and overflowing. He has grace waiting for us in places we would never think to look.

He is right here with us, with grace upon grace for us.

How often have we missed a gift sitting right in front of us?

How often have we called amazing grace, annoying grace?

Let’s find contentment in knowing that grace waits us out. Grace always finds its place.

 

Amy Seiffert is an author, writer, life coach, and teacher. She serves on the teaching team at Brookside Church, where she also directs community groups. She has been an affiliate Cru staff member for more than eighteen years. Weaving biblical wisdom through her presentations, Amy inspires, teaches, and humbly invites any willing spiritual pilgrim to walk alongside her in the pursuit of truth and the knowledge of God. 

What if today is the perfect time to notice God’s grace in one another? Women are so often weighed down by comparison, anxiety, and fear that the idea that grace could look amazing on them feels unbelievable. But all around us are flashes of grace, shining examples of God’s love.

Amy says it’s the everyday moments that Jesus shines through: making time for a friend even when your to-do list is pages long; apologizing to your neighbor when you don’t want to admit you are wrong; opening the Bible when your soul feels hollow and empty. Making the choice to accept God’s limitless love no matter what and reflecting it back to the world around you—friend, that’s when His grace looks amazing on you.

A perfect gift to affirm and encourage any woman, Grace Looks Amazing on You is a timeless Christian message packed with personal story and reflection, Scripture, and deep biblical truth. This 100-day devotional will help you change your perspective so you can confidently radiate the grace of Christ.

[ Our humble thanks to Tyndale for their partnership in today’s devotion ]