The Day of Grace

‘Abdu’l-Bahá wrote:

Regarding one’s lack of capacity and one’s undeserving on the Day of Resurrection, this does not cause one to be shut out from gifts and bounties; for this is not the Day of Justice but the Day of Grace, while justice is allotting to each whatever is his due. Then look thou not at the degree of thy capacity, look thou at the boundless favour of Bahá’u’lláh; all-encompassing is His bounty, and consummate His grace.1

This quote got me to thinking what the Day of Grace looks like. The image that came to mind was of studying poetry in a college class. If I were to present a well-written poem in such a class, it’s possible I might receive praise and encouragement, and the teacher would encourage me to keep writing. But if I wrote poorly, at best there’d be some helpful criticism – but more likely people would be polite, indifferent, and wait for a better poem to come along.

If I wrote a poem in a kindergarten class, however, it really wouldn’t matter if the poem were grammatical, if it rhymed, or even if it had any real meaning at all. The response would be pretty much the same in all cases: my mom would put it up on the fridge, the teacher would give me a star, and my parents would keep praising my efforts and encouraging me to write more.

If this is a Day of Grace, I think it means our spiritual efforts meet with a Divine response more like the kindergarten experience than the college one. It’s not the quality or excellence of what we do, but that we do it all, that wins His support.

  1. Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of, p. 179