One thing is certain - grace comes from God. And as Lent progresses I'm discovering at least one definition: developing a better understanding of God's incredible love for us, and how that influences how we should live.
Where does this 'better understanding' come from? God talks to us through different channels, and we have to listen in order to get those 'aha' moments from Him.
One source He uses is people. Ever had someone say something that 'suddenly' resonates with you? Every Monday one of the ladies in my volunteer group gives me one of their insights. Yesterday I was reminded that I have faith because of the Holy Spirit working within me. How much better does it get than that?! What a powerful ally - the greatest ally I could have in the battle between Good and Evil.
Because I'm attending Mass daily for Lent, I'm always getting little 'aha' moments in Church. God reminds me through the readings and the Gospel, as well as Father's sermons, that He is all merciful, even before being just. He sent His Son to save sinners. He didn't do it as a hoax, He's not pretending to care - it won't turn out that He was lulling us into a false sense of security. He desperately wants us to love Him, and it's never too late to start doing it! The parable of the Prodigal Son clearly teaches this.
The Bible, writings of the saints and other holy people, TV programs like "Touched by an Angel" - these are other methods God uses to give us the grace to understand His love.
But receiving grace is also receiving a responsibility. Once God gives us the grace to understand His love for us, we've received the blueprint for how to live.
And once we obtain this blueprint, we can't pretend not to have it. We can't escape our responsiblity to live the Christian life. But we need to remember that through His grace God gives us the tools to get to Heaven.