I’m coming to the end of the writing process on Queen of the Third Grade, where my protagonist, Gwen Murphy, finishes her last year teaching. She ponders as she faces various challenges how to manage life in truth and grace. Somewhere along the line, she realizes only God knows truth and only God can find the boundaries between truth and grace, which puts humans in the position of needing to turn to Him whenever life hands us sticky situations.
Now, I’m not talking about whether to do the dishes or not. If you choose not to, that can get pretty sticky. But that’s not the sticky I mean. The sticky I mean is more like when you become friends with someone who lives in a culture or lifestyle you don’t share. The Atheist and the Christian, the person of color and the white, the straight and the gay, the rifle-toter and the pacifist, that kind of thing. In those kinds of relationships, one pastor suggests you need a yes, no, yes philosophy, which I think is one way of applying grace and truth.
My understanding of yes, no, yes is yes, I’m going to be your friend, respect you as someone made in the image of God. No, I can’t agree with everything you think or do. But yes, I’m going to be your friend anyhow. And I’m going to pull this off because as we move through life, I’m going to keep turning to Jesus to ask where truth and grace are right now, in this situation and copy His example of open arms and honesrty.
I hope, when Queen of the Third Grade is published, you’ll take a look at Gwen’s last year. It’s a doozy. Hopefully, it’ll be on Amazon by Christmas.