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“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.”

–Ephesians 2:8

Even though the first day of summer on the calendar is not for a couple of weeks, summer arrived in blazing style this past weekend with the heat!

When the weather starts to turn hot and humid, I enjoy looking for children’s lemonade stands in my neighborhood. With pandemic restrictions easing up, I saw my first lemonade stand this past weekend and it was my neighbors just next door. I noticed their stand go up as I was finishing mowing my lawn. It was perfect timing as I was warm and in need of something like a cold glass of lemonade.

The stand was being run by three neighborhood kids under the age of 10, with oversight from one of the mothers, who sat at a distance. They had a small table, a cooler to keep their product cold, a box with change and a really big sign to attract customers. The sign had each letter of the word ‘Lemonade’ spelled with a different color marker and the letters were of various sizes that got smaller near the end of the word in order to fit it on the poster board.

The sign announced the offerings of the day…Lemonade; small or large, yellow or pink, ice or no ice and then the prices. As I was looking at the sign, the three kids began to tell me about the products and included their safety protocols of how they were wearing gloves to be safe when they grabbed handfuls of ice and when they touched the cups. I was also told that they lost count on how many scoops of lemonade they put in the pitcher of pink, so it might be really sweet or not sweet enough and that they were willing to give me a free sample to test it. After that, each glass was 50-cents.

Since I was warm and thirsty, I decided to go with a glass of each kind of lemonade and take my chances on the sweetness. After the two glasses of lemonade were poured, I gave them a $5 bill. They looked at each other and then glanced back at the mother, a little uncertain about making change. When I told them to keep the change to get business off to a good start, you would have thought I had given them a $100 bill…They said it didn’t cost that much and started to ask each other how many more glasses of lemonade they should give me so I would have five dollars worth? When I said I really only needed the two glasses and there was no need to give me any more, they each spoke a sincere ‘Thank-You!’

And that is what grace is…undeserved, unexpected joy, that does not require us to do anything, but saying ‘Thank-You’ is always nice. May we think about the grace extended to us each day and may our response be thanks to God for God’s amazing grace!