Why do we have such a hard time reconciling God's holiness with his grace?
It would seem us humans are a little more narrow minded than God and seem to have a hard time holding the entire context of a situation in our limited perspective. As a result we very often do away with an aspect of God that isn't comfortable for us with and cling to the aspect of God that best suits our agendas and needs.
On one hand we have this need to live by God's law. To establish His holiness and unchanging, unbending nature that lives by the law and upholds truth no matter what. But this so often leads us to look down on others (or ourselves) for being unable to live up to an impossible set of standards.
On the other hand some of us forget He is a holy God and abuse His forgiveness and Grace, in effort to take the edge off the harshness and unforgiving behavior so often exemplified through His followers. Often this leads to making all kinds of allowances in the name of "love", "acceptance", and "tolerance" (all good things in the right context) while ignoring and even exacerbating destructive behavior...
But what if it's not just one or the other?
What if the answer doesn't lie in either one of these polarizing stances, or even somewhere in-between them?
What if instead truth is found only when we fully embrace both?
On their own neither fully represents God-- and when we try to show only the aspects of God we like, we find ourselves guilty of the sin of omission or worse-- trying to create God into our own image, an image that better suits the life we want to live.
I think it's only when we fully realize the unbending holiness of God that puts into perspective the true darkness and weight of our sin can we ever begin to feel the depth and force of his love and grace. To feel one we need the other.
If we remove the seriousness of our sin, we then remove the need to be saved from it, which leads us to not even needing Gods grace to begin with
So how about instead of anesthetizing destructive behavior to make us and others feel better, we be honest about the weight and negative effects it has?
Instead or expecting anyone to live up perfectly to God's perfect standards, we help ourselves and others rest in His grace, forgiveness, and unconditional love; that shines so much brighter in the context of our brokenness.
What if we tried to embrace fully the heights of God's holiness and the depth of his grace?
I don't know, but perhaps we would start to know and show God not as something we think looks good, but instead as the beautiful savior He truly is.