Regeneration: A new lens for grace

According to an online dictionary, regeneration is the action or process of regenerating or being regenerated. Now, I know that using the same root word in the definition doesn’t tease out much understanding. The good thing about online definition finding is that I noticed on the side of the same page the biologic concept of ‘regeneration’ that was quite generative.

According to Wikipedia, in biology, regeneration is the process of renewal, restoration, and growth that make genomes, cells, organisms, and ecosystems resilient to natural fluctuations or events that cause disturbance or damage. Every species is capable of regeneration, from bacteria to humans.

The process of renewal, restoration and growth already sounds like a spiritual journey. The purpose of this regenerative process, to make us resilient to the natural fluctuations or events that cause disturbance or damage, sounds like the grace of God.

This past summer, right after we moved, I reread an old blog of mine where I gave myself some good advice: to see my life through the lens of grace rather than fear and anxiousness.   I know this does not change what is, but affords me another way to situate the circumstances of my life.

So, I particularly took notice when Anne Lamott wrote in Operating Instructions, that, that’s what grace is—the divine assistance for regeneration.

I will conflate biology and Anne’s definition of grace: God is guiding, directing, creating and a participant in the process of renewal, restoration, and growth so that I become resilient. Being resilient means I am able to face whatever is, in surrender, which seems the opposite of strength but, in the great paradox of faithfulness, is strength.

What does it mean to see my life through the lens of grace?

I am grateful that each circumstance, each experience, each moment is one where some part of me is growing, being restored, and renewed.  Grace.

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