Thursday, March 4, 2010

What Gifts of Common Grace are You Thankful For?

"Common Grace" is a bit hard to define, but essentially it refers to the grace God gives to all people (believers and unbelievers) which enables them to make valuable contributions to the world's culture, to do civic good and sustain earthly life and blessing (see Matthew 5:45).

Today, in the midst of fighting a wearying head cold, I am exceedingly grateful for the common grace gift of Afrin nasal spray. Whoever created this product has surely been an instrument of God's grace and kindness in my life, supplying me with the gift of breathing!

What's a gift of God's common grace that you are grateful for today?


  1. Doctors, nurses, EMTs, police officers, firefighters, etc. and our electric blanket!

  2. Oh wow, so many to choose from that it is hard to know where to start! Today I am particularly thankful for sunny weather and delicious olive oil from southern Italy!

  3. Computers -- even despite my love/hate relationship with them!

    Medical note: Pastor Larry, this is Dr. Jim speaking. Remember that, as great at Afrin is, do not use it for more than three days. After that, it causes more harm than good in the form of rebound congestion, where your nasal passages then start to get gradually more congested, causing you to become an "Afrin addict," using more of the spray, causing still more congestion, and...OK you get the picture.

    As in most areas of life, too much of a good thing is NOT a good thing.

    Jim W

  4. Jim -- Thanks for the medical warning! Truth be told, I actually was an Afrin addict for several years stretching over high school and then a good bit of college.

    Then in February of 1999 I went to a Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds concert at Penn State and Dave told a story about a friend of his who had to have is nose rebuilt because he was sniffing so much Afrin!

    That scared me off the stuff cold turkey, and since then I have been able to use Afrin on occasion when I am really struggling without a relapse of addiction.

    So there is another instrument of common grace: thank you, Dave Matthews, for saving my nose!

  5. I second the coffee, but lately I am very thankful for work.

  6. Motrin!

    And, I knew as soon as I saw your post that Jim would be chiming in! Thanks, Jim, for helping us to correctly manage our common medical graces!


  7. Larry's mom thanks you too, Dr. Jim