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Lookin' Thru Bifocals: Don Locke

There are numerous ramifications attached to the word “grace”. Fundamentally it means an unearned, unmerited gift.

            There are folks with the first and last name of the word, Grace. That’s one concept.

            An additional one is, when we get a bill sometimes it will tell us, “you have a 10-day grace period.” This means 10 days before this amount is due to be paid, you are free ‘til then.

            We see the word grace throughout the Bible: By Grace we are saved, through faith… it is a gift of God…” (Eph. 2: 8&9) In song: “Noah found grace in the eye of the Lord and landed high and dry.” Also, one of the all-time favorite Christian hymns: “Amazing Grace”.

            In my teaching years, occasionally while passing out test papers I would discover I had left material on the board, accidently, that could pertain to some of the test answers. Some kid would impartibly call my attention to it: “Mister Locke, did you mean to leave that on the board?”

            My answer: “No, that’s my fault, if you can use it, go right ahead – call that “grace”.

            This brings me to my story. Once in one of my college classes some of us had gotten permission to go to that classroom and study for the test – this was the night before.

            There were several blackboards around the room walls. We about filled them all with stuff from our notes.

            Now, Doctor Sullivan, our professor, was a young, laid-back guy – no sign of senility or having gone “bonkers”, came into the room and immediately started handing out the test papers. We all sort of looked at each other – the boards had not been erased from the night before. He didn’t seem to notice them!

            Long story short, when we saw the test results on the class bulletin board a couple days later, there wasn’t a grade lower than 90 by each name.

            Maybe the question for some arises: Did we cheat?

            I’ve related this story to folks over the years. I had only one person say she thought we did.

            I didn’t, I chalked it up to grace. I know Prof. Sullivan had good eyesight. I also know he was no “dummy”.

Kindest regards…


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