John Wesley was so impressed by God's grace that he made it a required subject for preaching. Embedded in the 52 Sermons he gave to those serving in the original 'Methodist' church, Wesley loved and taught the idea of God's grace. If you read the lyrics in our hymnal you will find this grace everywhere!
I have seen this idea of grace become a major subject of new songs by Hillsong United. One of my favorite expressions of this is the song, Splinters and Stones. The chorus says "All this time, like a river running through my failure, you carried me all this time." It is a beautiful and lyrical statement about what Wesley would have called prevenient grace. Prevenient grace is well-defined by breaking down the word into it's Latin roots ... 'pre' meaning before and 'veni' meaning to come. God was there even before we knew it. Psalm 139 says "You knew me before I was formed in my mothers womb." Wesley read this Psalm and became assured of God's presence, His calling and His sustaining power. God calls all of His creatures to himself. He draws them and is there, even when we do not see.
At a memorial service for my mom and dad I remembered them and this song. I remembered that when I was young and didn't even know I needed anything, they were there. They remained through my successes and they stayed through my failures. Even more than them, God is that river flowing through all of my stumbles and falls. Jesus carried me, enduring the scars, the incredible weight of my sin and the dead weight of my inaction. He drew me to Himself and still draws me to Him. It is reassuring during busy weeks like this one. "Thank you, Lord, for carrying me ... sustaining me ... loving me. AMEN!" Randy