Trusting Grace – By J. Claude Huguley

There are two things to remember about God: First, there is a God; second, I am not God. These “two things” are simple and profound, but easily forgotten. Forgetting them has consequences. We are now consumed in fear. Fear changes what we see, how we see, and what we value. It changes us and changes our relationships in distortive and destructive ways.

Fear takes many forms. Our fear may be about personal security. Our fear may show as we worry about our things. Anxieties about personal image fuel fear. Fear can also seep into our understanding of God. All these sources of fear create a need for control. Forgetting the “I’m not God,” we try creating our own safety by exercising control over the world around us. Dictating, objectifying, dominating, grasping, guarding, hiding, lying—using these and all their derivatives, we attempt to soothe our fear. With time, these strategies fail and our relationships suffer. We create more fear for ourselves, adding to the fear in the world. Is there a better way?

My own perspectives about fear and potentials for transformation have been shaped by experience serving as a hospital chaplain for more than thirty years. As “generic” ministers, hospital chaplains walk alongside anyone who would desire help in making meaning and sense of the world. It matters little whether that individual claims a traditional faith understanding or would rather not use the language of any faith. For me, the wisdom in spiritual understanding comes from many sources. Each of us can benefit from the varying insights we discover while traveling on our own journey of meaning. The key question would seem to be: “Does this insight help me name and understand my own experience and the relationships within my world?

If so, we are free to incorporate the insight into our ongoing searches for meaning. If not, we are free to discard any ideas we may find questionable, unusable, or wrong. We may also choose to withhold final judgment for now and see where our understanding takes us. In this book, I will be approaching spirituality and “meaning making” from this more open-ended stance, while making use of stories and teachings that come from my own Christian tradition. I hope my particular framing of them will assist both Christians and any other seekers of meaning in their individual life journeys.

Chapters 1–5 will unmask destructive fear—its origins, its reach, and the many ways it undermines and destroys individual relationships and sabotages community. Exposing fear disarms its coercive power, freeing us. Chapters 6–10 invite us into a new way of living, realigning our lives with LOVE* and allowing the gifts of grace to transform destructive expressions of fear into personal healing and life-giving community. I hope readers will join with me, trusting grace for the journey.

J. Claude Huguley

J. Claude Huguley

J. Claude Huguley is a son, brother, spouse, father, and grandfather and has been a hospital chaplain for 33 years. He is Board Certified with the Association of Professional Chaplains and endorsed by the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. He is a graduate of Clemson University (1981) and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (1985).










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