Amazing Grace

Yes, all of you clothe yourselves with humility, to subject yourselves to one another; for 'God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.' Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time, casting all your worries on him, because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:5 WEB

A friend of mine stopped by my house one day and asked me to ride to town with him. We played music together on the weekends, he was a drummer, and I played bass guitar. To be honest, I was not much of a believer at the time, but he would tell me about Jesus and the Holy Spirit and invite me to church with him, all while smoking a joint. He was an humble person and never looked down on anyone, but my did he love the drugs. He often grew his own. Though I didn't really care for drugs, or hearing about Jesus at the time, I rode with him to town because he was my friend.

He drove an old mid 70s Camaro with missing hubcaps, slick tires, and the exhaust pipes dragged under it when you hit a bump. He had painted it by hand using a brush and a roller with a dark blue house paint. There was a knife stabbed in the dash with an FM converter swinging from it, held by a shoestring. I guess he felt it would have taken him too long to mount it under the dash. His driver's license had been suspended, he had no insurance, and an illegal tag. We were just two young and dumb musicians.

When we started back home and reached the outskirts of Conway, we ran into the biggest pack of police cars that I had ever seen. There must have been at least eight state troopers parked on the sides of the road and they were setting up a road check. As we approached, a state trooper walked out into the road and raised his hand to stop us, and my heart began to sink. I knew that my friend here was going to jail for a long time, and I could see a big bag of pot sticking out from under my floor mat. This was going to be very hard to explain.

We were the first car that arrived at the road check, and man had they hit the jackpot. When we got about 50 feet away and began applying the brakes to stop, the policeman suddenly waved us on through, and stopped the car directly behind us. It was like a moment right out of Star Wars: 'These are not the ones we are looking for' when really, we were exactly what they were looking for. We drove home uneventfully and in awe.

I could hardly believe it. My friend just smiled. I talked with him about it and his motto was 'Never judge anyone.' He took judge not and you shall not be judged literally (Luke 6:37). It certainly seemed to work for him, for he had great grace on his life. In fact, he later painted that on the gas tank of his motorcycle: 'Great Grace.' Grace is the unmerited, unearned, undeserved favor of God.

Even though I was not really a believer at the time, I learned that having a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus is priceless, anytime, anywhere. I am not saying that any of this was right, most of it was certainly wrong, and I was just a passenger. I don't do drugs, and my car is insured. I am just telling you what happened that day. That brother loved God dearly, served God just as he was, where he was, tried to not judge others, and God showed him mercy. Love covers a multitude of sins. The moral of the story is this: 'You don't have to be perfect to walk with Jesus.'

Prayer: Heavenly Father please forgive me for ever looking down on others and spare me from the seeds that my words have planted. Let me learn to walk in Your grace and mercy right where I am, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.

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