what it means to have grit

Last week we took Josh's car in to the mechanic where we got a nasty diagnosis: clutch replacement. Do you know what a clutch replacement costs? Like, a full, complete clutch overhaul? $1400. That's four figures. And unlike the giant crunch in the back bumper, we kind of had to fix this. I mean, it's the clutch. You can't really drive the car if the clutch doesn't work. So the car spent the week in the shop, and we concluded the week by shelling out many monies.

So here's what I learned about bad news and expensive car repairs: Gracious living can also include graciously accepting what's dealt to you. Sometimes gracious living means biting the bullet and shelling out cash for something that turns out to be more important than another. 

I learned something else. When you live life with a gracious heart, you develop some grit. Literally grit is tiny pieces of dirt. But think about it: minuscule pieces of sand or dirt can actually refine and smooth out rough surfaces. How many times have you used a sea-salt scrub on your hands to exfoliate, or used sandpaper to smooth out a piece of wood? Really, grit is refining. Grit, in a roundabout way, is gracious.

I looked up grit in the dictionary to see what MW had to say its colloquial meaning, and what I found was insightful: "firmness of mind or spirit; unyielding courage in the face of hardship or danger."  Grit doesn't mean an unfeeling exterior, it means finding refinement within our challenges. Gracious living doesn't make you weak--it gives you grit, and in my book, grit is pretty awesome.

So next time you grudgingly take your car into the mechanic, don't feel so upset. Remember that when you have grit, you also have refinement.

This post is part of a 31-day series on gracious living. You can find the other posts here.


Denise Wood said...

Grandma always said she was gritty. And she was.

Ande said...

I loved this connection.

Also, I love the movie True Grit.

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