Working within the tension.

By Carrie Dubay.


Today feels like a perfect opportunity to share something that’s been impacting my heart and my life of late.


Several months ago, I heard a beautiful sermon about loving your community. And in the message, the speaker shared something that so beautifully describes how a community can come together and be truly transformative. I’m borrowing right from his visual because I feel it is such a powerful way to represent something we struggle with daily – the tension in our lives.


Imagine I’m standing in front of you with a rubber band. It’s not worth much hanging limp in my hand. It’s weak and cannot accomplish its purpose as it is. Now let’s pretend that this rubber band represents TRUTH. Laying alone in my hand on its own, it feels isolated and weak. Or imagine it’s GRACE. It’s just as weak all alone. Truth and grace are two very powerful virtues that we stand for. Yet they are so limited when they guide our lives without any accountability. When we stand only for truth or only stand for grace, we often isolate ourselves and accomplish very little relationally.


Now imagine this rubber band is pulled taut, stretching itself between these two powerful things. When me marry the two, something we call tension happens. And in this beautiful, powerful place of tension, in the struggling of marrying truth and grace, we are stretched. When we are stretched, I believe that is where we do our best living. And that’s where we do our best LOVING – of ourselves and others.


I’ve certainly found this to be true for me. As I make efforts to do more of my living and loving within the tension of these two powerful tenets of my life, I find so much more fruit in my relationships with others and peace in my heart. No, we don’t always agree. And that’s ok. But we should always accept, honor and recognize the value in every human being and operate with an intention of love. This is no easy task, but we should long to be stretched, and we should be grateful for the tension.


I cannot imagine a more perfect time to be intentionally focusing on the areas of tension in your life. Are you loving your neighbor? Are you serving the underserved? Are you offering a voice to the one who cannot be heard? Are you taking a grace-filled stand for the truths you hold in your heart?


I challenge you to think about living your day within the tension of truth and grace. And loving.

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