This is another “you know it when you see it” experience. Grace is a favorite of mine, maybe because it can’t be faked. I can’t even fake it myself when I wish I was in it, the state of Grace. There is a magical quality to it when it comes to you or from you. I believe when we are in a state of Grace we are experiencing who we are in our true essence, not obscured by thoughts of past and future. In the course of a day, we can encounter random individuals who, in their graciousness, lift us out of our own beleaguered state. When this happens it’s a “Wasn’t that lovely of them,” moment.

If Grace has an opposite, it’s not awkwardness, or rudeness, or any other of the “nesses.”

Oh wait, maybe cluelessness! That’s when I know I need Grace, when I’m in a situation where I just don’t have a clue. Some form of prayer is sometimes required for Grace to show up, to descend upon you, to take you over. If you throw up your hands and surrender when you know you don’t know, Grace may grace you. Then you’ll do exactly what the situation calls for and, you’ll do that, well, gracefully.

I can, and do, have Grace as a goal in my daily life, not only the physical but the spiritual kind. Yet it often eludes me. This is perhaps because of holding on, not letting go. I hold on to “the story of me.” This puts me in conflict with “the story of them.” Grace enters when we drop our stories and be Present in the moment. Yes, that again. I may feel clueless because I’m in my head looking for clues instead of Present to receive Grace.

Then there are the “Wow” moments when you can’t miss it, you know you’re blessed; you’re in the presence of something not of your own making.

That’s the time to shut up, set it down, and soak it up. Give way to Grace.

It helps also to have some Grace role models. Not all role models teach in the same way. If what you need to learn is to hold your ground, set boundaries, or even how to get angry, you can choose someone who does all of this with Grace. (Yes, I know. Rare.) Keep looking. Or become that person.

You’re wondering how. Me too. I struggle. Mostly it’s about being quiet enough, inside and out, to recognize intervals of Grace when they come. The ones in Nature are easy to spot. In relationships, you can miss it if you’re too busy or too caught up in a story line (what he did to me, what I should have said etc.). Like anything else, it’s about practice. It’s about never giving up. It’s about listening for what matters. And yes, it’s about paying Attention. Animals know how to pay Attention, next week’s topic.

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