By the all-powerful dispensations of Providence, I have been protected beyond all human probability and expectation; for I had four bullets through my coat, and two horses shot under me, yet escaped unhurt, altho' death was levelling my companions on every side.GEORGE WASHINGTON, letter to John A. Washington, Jul. 18, 1755
"And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities that the power of Christ may rest upon me." II Corinthians 12:9
To study George Washington's life is to study the testimony of God's grace upon a man chosen by God to lead a world into the era of democracy.
God's favor rested upon George Washington. This we can see in the above quote. God had a plan and General Washington found grace in God's sight.
Have you ever considered what is entailed in God's grace? The word 'grace' means favor or the manifestation of favor by a superior. Usually we limit it to "For by grace are ye saved..." (Ephesians 2:8a). In other words, God's favor upon us to save us from our sins. But when you study grace from Genesis to Revelation you get a greater sense of what the word really means. A greater sense that grace is the favor God gives a person to have God's continual presence, to become His chosen to serve Him and live for Him.
George Washington served God in the manner God had laid out for him. Moses also did.
The children of Israel sinned before God when they made a golden calf to go before them.
"Up, make us gods, which shall go before us;..." Exodus 32:1b
"...and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt." Exodus 32:4
How grave a sin to claim a created thing (or as is tossed about in today's vernacular, the Universe) does for us what God does for us.
Moses interceded on their behalf. No doubt Moses sorrowed greatly. God removed Himself from the Israelites, and Moses took the tabernacle and pitched it outside of the camp. Then he entered it, and communed with God.
I imagine Moses thought back to when God called to him from the burning bush. God called him by name. God had a purpose for Moses, and God laid it out to him.
"And he said, Certainly I will be with thee; and this shall be a token unto thee, that I have sent thee: When thou hast brought forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain." Exodus 3:12
I imagine Moses contemplated these words when he said,
"...Yet thou hast said, I know thee by name, and thou hast also found grace in my sight. Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight:..." Exodus 33:12b-13a
When a sovereign grants a person the privilege of approaching the throne, it is a favor. What more favor could a sovereign grant someone then for that person to become his close friend, ever by his side? Moses sought that ultimate favor with God.
"What shall we say then? shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?" Romans 6:1-2How dare we think that grace simply means our sins are forgiven and therefore we are free from the eternal consequences of sin. Grace is the favor God showed to us to become His children, His servants, His new creation. What great honor He bestows upon us--like He bestowed on Moses, like He bestowed on George Washington--that we might be considered worthy of His presence in our lives; that we might be considered worthy of serving Him in His presence, of being a part of His great plan.
"I beseech you therefore, brethren by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
"And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.
"For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith." Romans 12:1-3God gave Paul the grace to serve Him. The grace given to Paul was his commission to preach the Gospel among the Gentiles. The privilege of following God's leading into dangerous places where Paul would see God's mighty work. The favor God showed Paul by revealing to him God's power to save lives: to save body, soul, and spirit. And each time a person received the grace of God unto salvation, Paul received a greater understanding of the mystery of grace and the greatness of God's love.
How about you? Are you limiting grace to merely God freeing you from sin's eternal consequences? Or are you willing to experience the fulness of God's grace by walking in the presence of God; by letting God reveal to you His way for you; thereby allowing you to know Him more, and then enabling you to know more of God's grace?
Are you willing to experience the fulness of God's grace when you walk in His ways?