903. For me, every hour is grace. And I feel gratitude in my heart each time I meet someone and look at his or her smile. ~Elie Wiesel

I do not at all understand the mystery of grace –
only that it meets us where we are
but does not leave us where it found us.
~Anne Lamot

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Why I had an ischemic stroke in the fall of 2012, I know not. But why I’m still alive and suffer no residual damage from said stroke, I do know is solely because of God’s grace and mercy. And so as I approach the anniversary of that event each year, I find myself pondering, more intentionally, humanity’s desire for “life, love, and the pursuit of happiness.” I don’t know that I have any more answers about profound conundrums, but I am always grateful, as another birthday approaches, that I have been given the chance to continue my quest in search of them. What I can say at this point however, is that words like “patience,” “enough,” “slow down,” “gratitude,” “love,” “giving,” “simplify,” “goodness” and “grace” have all exponentially increased in importance in the last three years. And of those, “love” is as Petrarch said, “the crowning grace of humanity, the holiest right of the soul, the golden link which binds us to duty and truth, the redeeming principle that chiefly reconciles the heart to life, and is prophetic of eternal good.” As for “grace” and why I am the recipient of the Lord’s amazing grace, it is a topic as stated by Lamott and the Apostle Paul, that’s hard to understand, that cannot be exhausted, and that mystifies me as to why I, so underservedly, continued to live in a state of grace upon grace upon grace upon grace…

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The apostle Paul never seemed
to exhaust the topic of grace –
so what makes us think we can?
He just kept coming at it
coming at it from another angle.
That’s the thing about grace.
It’s like springtime.
You can’t put it in a single sentence definition,
and you can’t exhaust it.
~Max Lucado

But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. ~Excerpt from 1 Corinthians 15:10  ✝

**Images via Pinterest; collage by Natalie