We are told in 2 Peter 3:18 to grow in grace. I was a little stumped as to how I'm supposed to do that since God is the the one who gives us grace. As I lay in bed I had this analogy drop into my mind, as clear as day; so here it is...

Growing in grace is a little like growing into new shoes. God gives us a measure of grace to get us started on our walk with him. Then, as we learn to use the grace that He's made available, we begin to grow out of the bounds of that grace. Kind of like when your feet grow and don't fit in your shoes anymore.

To enable you to continue to grow, He then has to give you more grace. I know that all of his grace is available to us but it's not useful to us unless we have learned how to engage it. 

tells us that He won't allow us to be tempted beyond what we are able to handle. But it is only His grace that enables us to handle that temptation. So if He was to give us all the grace that He has, in one hit, then essentially we would be 'equipped' to handle even the worst temptations and trials, which clearly most of us aren't. So having that grace without knowing how to engage it would only be setting us up for failure.

So what I figure is that He gives us a measure of grace and expects us to be studious in learning and practicing the art of engaging that grace to overcome current situations. After we have learnt how to do that consistently then we have outgrown that portion of grace and thus need more to continue to stretch and grow. 

We don't give kids adult-size shoes because they simply can't walk in them and probably never would learn to walk at all. So we give them shoes that fit so they can learn to walk and practice. Then, when they are good at that and their feet outgrow those shoes, we buy them bigger ones and so on. 

This could cause some people to sit back and say "Well I won't learn to overcome the small things so then I don't have to experience the harder things." But a real Christian wouldn't think like that. A real Christian wants to learn and grow. 

That helps to keep the focus on the now. If we just learn how to practice engaging the grace we have now, then it's a slow and steady process that will always enable us to overcome no matter how hard things are. 

We will all inevitably fail many times, but that's part of the learning process with each new measure if grace. When we fail we learn, and the more we learn the more grace we can handle.