I Corinthians 15:1-28
But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. I Corinthians 15:10 (NKJV)
It is common to define GRACE as the unmerited favor of God. And so it is. Grace is the free gift of God to us despite what we really deserve. Grace is POSITIVE. It is more that the withholding of punishment (that is MERCY). It is the bestowing of benefit that we did not earn.
But, grace goes even further. It is more than a doctrine about how God accepts us. Grace is the RELEASE OF THE POWER OF GOD. When grace is released in our lives, the result is not only a new STANDING before God, but also a new POWER from God.
In other words, grace and works are not opposites. They are instead akin to each other. True grace produces powerful activity. Grace brings great vitality. You find yourself able to do that which otherwise you could not do.
Grace takes us to a higher level. We begin to operate in the supernatural power of God. The Holy Spirit releases His dunamis (Greek word for "power") and the results are that you mount up in the winds of God and are carried faster, higher, and further than ever before. That's grace!