Home motherhood/family/parenting Flesh-Covered Grace

Flesh-Covered Grace

by Kelly Crawford

The piercing pain of my sin is bittersweet, reminding me of my deep love of the Father.  Grace covers my nakedness and then He clothes me in righteousness. I want to walk worthy of this robe, and that’s why sin hurts…and it should.

Home is the place where all is revealed….the deep pain, the deep love and the deep grace.

“There is an unconscious influence that hangs about every life like an atmosphere, which is more important than the words or acts of the life….When the results of life are all gathered up it will probably be seen that the things which have made the deepest and most lasting impressions in our homes and upon our children have not been the things we did with purpose and intention, planning to produce a certain effect, but the things we did when we were not thinking of training or influencing or affecting any other life.”  (From The Family, J.R. Miller)

Training is needful…there is no denying that.  But training alone is futile, like seeds dropped on parched soil.  That is, the soul-soil of our children must be nurtured and cultivated with constant tenderness and friendship so that the seeds can grow there.

My tongue has been the greatest source of my sorrow lately.

The law of kindness is on her tongue”.  A kindness that rules.  Is that true of me?

“Out of the heart the mouth speaks.”

And sometimes the words fall out too carelessly, too harshly, and the Father shows me the contents of my heart just then, and it hurts.

And then He offers more grace, and I must offer it too; and they give it, those who are still wearing the ugly, regurgitated contents of my heart.

They still call me “the best Mom in the whole world”.

And that can only be HIS grace, made flesh and dwelling here.

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Ginger August 18, 2010 - 7:29 am

That was a very painful quote to read! How true though.
When I was apologizing to my daughter for being sarcastic in correcting her, telling her how awful that was of me, she chose then to call me the best mom ever.
I was flabbergasted. God is so merciful.

Jessica August 18, 2010 - 7:33 am

I wrote about similar ways we use our words to hurt the ones we love.

It’s comforting to know that there are other people working on surrendering that part of self.


shelly August 18, 2010 - 7:42 am

Timely. Needed this, today.

Diane August 18, 2010 - 9:12 am

My eyes filled with tears as I read your post… and these verses came to my mind: “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers and grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: and be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”
Oh Lord, I have so far to go….

Terri August 18, 2010 - 9:33 am

Oh, this touched deep. We have just recently moved to a small village in Germany and I told my husband I think the trip over took 2 years off my life. I am such a homebody so traveling with 9 children has stretched me beyond measure at times. They have been so forgiving and still want ME to go on a bike ride with them, ME watch them on the swing, ME build a playmobile castle. Grace, Grace, God’s grace, grace that can pardon and cleanse…

Heather August 18, 2010 - 10:49 am

And sometimes the words fall out too carelessly, too harshly, and the Father shows me the contents of my heart just then, and it hurts.

And then He offers more grace, and I must offer it too; and they give it, those who are still wearing the ugly, regurgitated contents of my heart.

So often, we parents forget we are also mere children when compared to our Father. Always being trained and corrected as well.
I’ve had my share of humbling experiences, for sure.

the cottage child August 18, 2010 - 2:26 pm

I can’t tell you how timely this is – we’ve got the August blues – it’s beyond hot, reading isn’t doing it for us, we’re kind of tired of swimming, we’re definitely tired sitting around staring at each other, and my patience is the thinnest of the five of us. So I’m just trying to be quiet. Not just bite my tongue, but not even let my head go to the grumpy mommy place.

My kids were squabbling earlier, and I just looked at them. They started laughing almost immediately when they realized I wasn’t going to say anything, and my oldest asked if I was going to throw up. How’s that for what they understand of the harshness of the words I too often let slip? They’re enough to make someone sick. Ugh.

Word Warrior August 18, 2010 - 7:01 pm

We’ve got those blues too! (And it doesn’t help that in the first trimester I’m mentally *dull*. What to do? We’ve bought ice cream (the kids love that I’m pregnant for a number of reasons) done math and spelling drills for variety, and the cabin fever persists. I’ve never been so ready for fall.

Sara August 19, 2010 - 3:22 pm

I lit a fall candle, turned the air down a little bit, and played some Christmas music trying to get all of our spirits up today!!! By God’s mercy, it worked for this morning. I have mostly “littles” (4 out of 6 are 3 and under) so maybe it was just my attitude that needed lifting?!?!

Word Warrior August 19, 2010 - 3:57 pm


Aren’t you clever!

Jennifer August 19, 2010 - 5:56 pm

Christmas music is great for any time of year 🙂 My own spirits were lifted by the ghouls and goblins in Walgreens today! :0 Autumn and its holidays (and refreshing coolness) are almost here!

Praise God for this quick-seeming summer; He really helped me through it. Last summer I nearly wilted with heat and boredome *shudder*

Yama August 18, 2010 - 4:26 pm

Ouch. ouch ouch ouch OUCH.

But a good ouch. A very timely thing I needed today. Thank you for sharing.

Kelly L August 18, 2010 - 4:44 pm

So true! It seems I have allowed Jesus to be Lord of almost every area of my life except my tongue! He is working on me, and the grace is so sweet! I must remember to give as good as I get 😉
Beautiful reminders…

~in NOT of~ August 18, 2010 - 6:42 pm

I am so sad, yet very relieved the other comments say this post was timely. I found myself wondering today how many times my children would forgive me before one of them says no. How many times will I mess up before I get it right? Will I ever even get it right? Uhg! I hate my sin. My rude, quick, biting tounge. Thank you for letting me know I am not alone. And for reminding me that my sin should hurt, because it does.

melessa August 18, 2010 - 8:24 pm

Thank you! This was extremely edifying. I’ve often found myself tearing at my hair for my sharp tongue. “I should have said it differently!” “There was NO grace in that!” “My children are going to become sharp-tongued, too!”
Thank you for the timely reminder that we are all works in progress! (Phil 1:6)

Jennifer August 19, 2010 - 5:57 pm

You really are a great mom, Kelly. I know we all fall short, but I’ve never seen a mom think about her kids and what best to do for them more than you.

Word Warrior August 19, 2010 - 9:16 pm

You’re sweet, Jennifer. Very encouraging words for me.

rejoicealways August 19, 2010 - 10:12 pm

Thanks for this post. Muchly needed today! Has anyone ever suggested you write a devotional for moms? You’d be the person for it! 🙂

Word Warrior August 20, 2010 - 6:12 am

Well, your word comes after spending some time in prayer about the next possible product…hmmm…I will ponder that heavily–thanks!

Julia August 24, 2010 - 4:56 pm

Thank you for this post. I had a “moment” this morning and found myself asking both the Lord and my children for forgiveness. I know in my heart that there are other ways to get their attention than unleashing my sharp tongue, that with the Lord’s help I can rule consistently with kindness. But when we hit these bumps in the road I get discouraged. It was so encouraging to read your words, to know I’m not the only one who falters, and that through prayer I will eventually be rid of my sharp tongue. For good. And good riddance.


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