Saturday, November 10, 2012


Hello Friends. 

I want to talk to you today about GRACE.  This post comes about because of something someone said to my MOM that caused her to shake her head.  I will not go in the details about that, but I will share with you what my MOM shared with me Saturday night.  It was late and we were at church and at some point we went in to the sanctuary church and MOM laid on her back in the chancel area looking up she said a prayer.  I knew this was an important moment so I laid there with her with my head on her chest.  I am putting some photos up of what we saw as we laid there in the silence of our thoughts and prayers.

Grace, as it turns out, is God’s unconditional, everlasting love for all of God’s creation.  God’s grace is not something that covers our sin like syrup, grace gets into our very being and transforms us. 

Even though there is  different terms used for Grace, Sanctifying, Justifying, and Prevenient, and there are other aspects of grace as well, make no mistake - God’s grace is one grace. There is one grace of God that is experienced in many different ways.

The one way we experience is called Prevenient Grace.  Prevenient Grace means God’s love and God’s grace is present with us throughout our entire lives. The term Prevenient comes from the Latin and means, “to come before.”  In Christian thought it means the grace that comes before any human endeavor.  Prevenient grace is at work before we are even aware of it.

So how do we specifically experience God’s Prevenient Grace? God reaches out to us through events in our lives, both positive and negative. The Holy Spirit can speak to our minds and our hearts through the stuff of life. Through music, relationships, art, and the natural beauty that surrounds us, God shows us his love and touches our soul. God is speaking and revealing himself even through the struggles, frustrations, and difficulties.

I'm going to tell you a story about Prevenient Grace in my MOM's life.  This is a story well before my time.  It is a story that my MOM thought of as she talked with this person who caused MOM to shake her head.

Looking back over that time before Grace broke thru, MOM could see events happening and people around her that God was using to touch her life.  And believe me, it still happens today.  Did you know that God's Prevenient Grace can work through those who don’t even know they are doing God’s work?  It's true.

In MOM's mid 20’s, after several challenging and life crushing events in her life she was once again "starting over” in many ways.  Each night MOM would walk her heart dog, Pete.  A 140 lbs Lab Great Dane mix through her neighborhood. 

This is Pete
Just up the street from her lived an elderly woman, named Gladis.  For whatever reason Pete would stop in front of Gladis' gate and it would take MOM a while to get him to move on.  (You try puling a 140 lbs of fur, muscle and determination).  One day as he stopped in front of the gate he started barking, something he rarely did.  Try as MOM might she could not make him stop barking or make him move.  After a while the screen door opened and out stepped this tiny 5 foot nothing, maybe 100 pounds soaking wet, elderly woman.  MOM began to apologize for Pete's behavior.  This elderly woman just put up a hand as if to shush my MOM.  

As Gladis approached her gate Pete sat right down and stopped barking.  She opened the gate and patted him on the head and handed him a treat of some sort.  It was like they were long lost friends.  This went on for a few days and then one day Gladis asked if MOM would like something to drink and to have a “sit” on the porch.  Long story short a wonderful and beautiful relationship developed.  Certainly aside from my MOM's grandparents, the most meaningful relationship she had to that point in her life.  Gladis made MOM feel welcomed, loved, needed.  Gladis really was Jesus' hands, feet and heart here on earth.  

Something funny though, Gladis never went to church, she never proclaimed Christ, BUT through her actions and love for my MOM, and her willingness to care for her, God’s grace could work in MOM's life.  Her love, God’s love, could keep a flicker of hope alive in MOM, until MOM could really and truly and fully accept God's grace herself.  God’s Prevenient Grace working through Gladis, allowed MOM to become the person that she is. 

And I believe without a doubt and with my whole heart (as does my MOM), that it was God’s Prevenint Grace working through Pete as well.

You see God’s Preveient Grace never lets us get so far away that we can’t respond to Christ’s invitation to relationship – over and over and over again.  Grace is always pursuing us, wooing us, shaping us, transforming us – and working to help us know and experience love and beauty, wholeness and healing in our lives and relationships.
And despite what others think, often times we can even experience God's Prevenient Grace through those who don't even know that they are doing God's work.

"Out of his fullness we have received grace in place of grace already given." John 1:16



  1. Oh Mister Goose, that is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing your moms story. What a wonderful way to greet Sunday.

    Your friend

  2. Goose This is beautiful!
    Someday, me shall has to tells yous my Mommy's grace story. Finding Grace helps everyone, yous only needs to open your heart to receive it!

  3. Ah Goose...this is truly a beautiful post!! Our mama says she has her very own Gladis in her life too. She didn't realize it until she just read this. She always knew there was something special about this "Gladis" in her life but couldn't quite put her finger on she can. We thank you so very much for that.
    Blessings to both you and your MOM.
    Chloe and LadyBug and mama Jeanne

  4. Wonderful post. We think your Mommy has a beautiful way of saying things. Mommy would love to say much more about this post, but her Benadryl is kicking in and her head is fuzzy. Later, beautiful furriends. XOXO

  5. Beautiful story and fabulous post. God does moves in mysterious ways. Somethings are meant to be if you let them. Have a super Sunday.
    Best wishes Molly

  6. Goose, all we can say is that your MOM is a strong and amazing person! This was a beautiful story. My Mommy's eyes are leaking quite a bit just reading this.

    The pictures too are incredible!

    Lily Belle

  7. thank you for the teary and touching true story. i do beleive that God directs us even before we accept Him and that he continues to put people in our way that will give us what we need when we need it, and that He also puts us in others way when they need it. i have seen it and had it happen to me over the years. thanks again and the ceiling shots are beautiful

  8. Thank you! You always find a way to touch my soul.

  9. Thanks for this wonderful post. Have a wonderful sunday :o)

  10. Interesting perspective and quite topical considering the events of the past week. Goose, I'm going to try my hardest to see God's grace working through "he who shall not be named." I suspect this will take much prayer, meditation and perhaps several boxes of doggy cookies, but I accept the challenge.

    God bless you on this rainy day in KS.

  11. Thank you for teaching this lesson, we have so much to learn.
    You touch so many lives.
    xo Cinnamon

  12. Goose, Thanks much for the most wonderful story and the pictures to go with it. You tell Mom that story has passed a little Grace on today to our whole family on this Veterans Day!

    Your Humble Pals
    Susie & Bites

  13. Goose and Mom this is absolutely one of the most beautiful post I've read and for sure the best sermon on everyday life I've heard in YEARS!! Mom says folks often cross our paths for a reason and she always tries to see the good even when it isn't so good
    Many many hugs to you and your Mom and God Bless Sweet Angel Pete what a handsome boy.
    Madi and Mom

  14. Thank you for this lovely post and such beautiful pictures. We all have so much to learn in a short amount of time. have a great weekend. xx00xx

    Mollie and Alfie

  15. Goose, that was so beautiful! It's got my mom all teary-eyed - but she said it's "good tears" 'cause she was so touched. She agrees completely that God works through all of us - whether we know it or not. He did indeed work through both Gladis and Pete. Isn't that awesome?!?
    Your photos and words are such a blessing to us all. Thank you, my friend. Please give your MOM a big hug for me, OK?

  16. Oh Goose and Mom, I loved reading this post and seeing these pictures. Such a beautiful post all around.

  17. Goose, your Mom has a wonderful way with words...thank you both for a wonderful post!


  18. Ma always LOVES your Sunday posts. Always so beautifuls, and thoughtfuls. This is one of our favorites. Thanks Goose and Moms!
    Pete is one gorgeous Angel.


  19. This is a wonderful post. It's amazing how God manages to put people, dogs, and our hearts in the right place at the right time to allow us come to know HIM and ourselves.
    Thank you for the reminder and the beautiful photos.

  20. Just wunderful....

    Woofs and Licks,
    Maggie Mae and Max

  21. This really is a beautiful post and one that has (again) touched my heart. Thank-you for sharing this part of you with us. I've seen God's grace in my life and sometimes I don't recognize it at first, but in looking back I do, and for that I am always humbled and grateful.

  22. Oh Goose, what a lovely post. Mommy is crying. She agrees with your Mom. Thanks so much for posting it. Mommy wouldn't have made it with the good Loed in last 5 weeks. God Bless your Mommym for sharing Pete's story.

    BTW......We told you we don't agree with that lost. They missed youm and lots of our friends....we need to come up with of our own.

    Sniff ya lattr.........Weenie

  23. Goose, you are so wise my friend. Not only does mom agree with God working through all these people but mom says God works through us dogs too! I was shocked when she told me that because I didn't know that any humans knew that! Then I thought about you and all the ways that you yourself have impacted the lives of me, Stanley and our pawrents! We are grateful to you, that you and your mom are letting God's grace flow through you to others. It is so important for us dogs to have a life of meaningfulness, purpose and love. You have demonstrated that so well for young pups such as ourselves. We hope you and your mom sleep well tonight.

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  24. Mega hugs and thanks to your Mom for this beautiful post. It was just wonderful.

    AND the photos - amazing.

    Woos - Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning and Mom

  25. We believe that is true, we see it and feel it everyday. Thanks for a beautiful and thought provoking post.

    Wyatt and family

  26. What a beautiful post. It makes me sad when folks try to "narrow" and constrain grace. Goose...I think you have been very helpful today.

  27. This was such a beautiful and moving post! :)

  28. Powerful testimony Goose! I see God's grace all over your mom and I know she touches so many people for Jesus, just loving us all as we are. I am so very thankful for you and your mom; you bless me so much.
    Hugs, Noreen

  29. What a wonderful wonderful post. Thank you.

  30. Goose we are late reading this but what a meaningful and heartfelt post. We have encountered Grace many times in our lives. We are blessed to have you in our lives.
    Stella Rose

  31. You know me, Goose. So you know that I don't say this lightly. This post really touched me deeply.

    I've been thinking about you all day, hoping that you are still getting better.