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Grace Bridges

“It seems as if all my bridges have been burned, you say that’s exactly how this grace thing works.” These are lyrics found in the middle of one of my favorite new songs Roll Away Your Stone by Mumford and Sons. I have found these lyrics to ring true. I spend much of my day running about as a ‘responsible’ husband, father, son, friend, and employee. Unsurprisingly, I build and burn bridges in the process. Too often it feels like I am running, not on a ‘bridge over troubled water,’ but in quicksand. All my movement is barely moving me. Even worse, I am about to go under. When this occurs my options are few, if any. I’m in need of grace and a sturdy bridge—a grace-bridge. God’s grace-bridges are most evident when we’ve burned our own.

As a disclaimer, I don’t know exactly how ‘this grace thing works.’ But I don’t think that this grace thing only works with burnt bridges or that we should go about intentionally burning them. God’s grace bridges us constantly. Grace bridges all day, everyday no matter what. Thankfully, we have a great opportunity to experience the Almighty quite intimately when all our bridges have been burned.

As for our personal bridges, typically we burn them to protect our kingdom or paradoxically, in an attempt to build it. To the contrary, we may not have burned our bridges. They could have spontaneously combusted. Or someone else has burned them for us. Regardless, we can feel like we are doing all we can and we’re getting nowhere. Our wheel-spinning is causing us to sink deeper in the same place. In just a short time we’re sunk. Thank God for THE grace-bridge, Jesus Christ. Through the grace of Christ we move off our unbridged island. Through the power of God, grace bridges any sinkhole or canyon we face.

Inevitably, we will burn bridges. We will do something or many things entirely regrettable or we do nothing at all when it’s clear we’re being led to do something. Either way, we’ll land on bridgeless islands needing a way home. That’s where the next lyric of my new favorite song applies, “It’s not the long walk home that will change this heart, but the welcome I receive at the restart.” This reflects the idea that God’s loving kindness leads us to change our ways, not a proverbial kick in the pants. It’s not the long uphill journey barefoot in the snow towards home that changes us. It’s grace. It’s the love of Christ. During bridgeless moments, it’s God’s love that expresses, “Welcome home, I’m so glad you’re here. Let’s get started again doing life together.”

Grace bridges. We can depend on it. God’s grace makes a way for us. Let’s stop intentionally building and burning bridges. Let’s look to cross the grace-bridges that have been erected on our behalf. God has already crossed over to be with us so we can walk these bridges together.

If you find yourself stuck, surrounded by your failed attempts at bridge building, take a moment to thank God. Yes, thank God. You have a unique opportunity to experience a grace-bridge. And you just might get to find out how this grace thing works.

About the Author

Artie has been communicating God's grace in various contexts over the last fifteen years. His passion is similar to Bill and Anabel's in that he desires to communicate God's grace in a way that makes it easily applicable in everyday life.