There But For The Grace Of God

February 23, 1998
by Mary Daniel

Psalm 40:6 – Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required.

A recent devotional entitled Giving Thanks rekindled my own little fire on 'giving thanks'. It spoke of the writer's fear for her daughter's warmth and safety in the midst of the terrible ice storm in Quebec, and while we were not in the exact same situation, I could surely identify with her thoughts.

We have three daughters who have finished, or are finishing their educations, all away from our home. One has a medical condition which requires daily medication.

Our daughters walk or cycle to and from work and school in huge cities. They use the transit systems. They are young women in a world which is becoming increasingly dangerous in which to walk. They have bungy-jumped, white-water-rafted, climbed rocks. One just told me she will be learning to snowboard this weekend.

They love life. They live life.

While I wish no ill on anyone or their family, when a tragedy occurs (especially in the same city in which they live), such as a bicyclist being hit, a snowboarder crashing and dying, a young woman being pushed onto the transit tracks, or an incident with someone who has the same medical condition as our daughter, I pray for the person and their family, and I give thanks that it wasn't one of our daughters.

So often the words, "There but for the grace of God, go I," are a familiar phrase in my mind, on my lips, in my prayers.

No matter how large or small, how important or insignificant it may seem, each and every one of us have those times when we would have been in a similar situation "but for the grace of God".

Prayer: Our Father in Heaven, we pray for those who are less fortunate, who are called to you in their youth, who are suffering in any way. We pray for their families, their friends their co-workers. We acknowledge that you are the architect of our lives and we thank you for those times when there but for your grace, it would have been us. Through Jesus Christ Our Lord we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Mary Daniel <marydee@shaw.ca>
Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada

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