We all experience stress and tension. How we respond either diffuses or ignites it. If lit, our tension can escalate, causing us to feel stretched beyond our capabilities. When we reach this state, we lament that God has abandoned us, and we head in the opposite direction.
But what if God does hear our cries for help and hides a gift within the tension? What if we moved toward our tension, instead of away, and found and unwrapped that gift? What if applying that gift to our struggle would transform it into grace, guiding us to a new response, one that could lead to the “better part”?
Tension to Grace is the guide that helps us do just that. Centered around the story of Martha and Mary in Luke 10:38-42, we follow the sisters’ transformative journeys through their own struggles. Imagining what transpires between Scripture verses, we’ll see their initial tension become the catalyst that drives both Mary and Martha to the feet of Jesus, the place where all wonderful transformations take place.
Simultaneously, Tension to Grace explores the more common areas where stress arises in our own lives today. Each chapter contains helpful tips to address it, a thought-provoking prayer to inspire us to go to God with our problems, and questions for reflection to help us see all the ways He’s working for our good.
Ultimately, we’ll find ourselves embracing this tension-as-gift approach, viewing it as a reminder to spend time in prayer at His feet. Each time we do, we’ll find and unwrap the gifts in our own struggles, using them to transform our tension into grace so we experience the joy God wants to bless us with always.
Claire McGarry is the author of With Our Savior, and Abundant Mercy, the Lenten devotionals for families, published by Creative Communications for the Family/Bayard, Inc., and Grace in Tension: Discover Peace with Martha and Mary, to be published by Our Sunday Visitor in the fall of 2021. A member of the Catholic Writers Guild, her freelance work has appeared in various Chicken Soup for the Soul books, Focus on the Family magazine, Catechist magazine, Keys for Kids devotional, The Secret Place devotional and These Days devotional. She contributes regularly to CatholicMom.com, Living Faith and posts weekly here on this blog, ShiftingMyPerspective.com. She’s also the founder of MOSAIC of Faith, a ministry with several different programs for mothers and children (see tabs above). She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and three children.
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