The Inconvenience of Mercy…

Devotional Thought of the Day:

11  But when the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with such scum?” 12  When Jesus heard this, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do.” 13  Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners. Matthew 9:11-13 (NLT)

36  Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. 37  “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; 38  give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” Luke 6:36-38 (ESV)

277         Rather than commit a fault against charity, give in, offer no resistance, whenever you have the chance. Show the humility of the grass, which yields without needing to know whose foot is stepping on it.  (1)

Mercy is elusive, and it is inconvenient, and perhaps most challenging, it is necessary for those who claim to be believers, those who have faith in, trust in and depend upon Jesus Christ.

It’s really elusive when you are trying to encourage others to be merciful, but the irony is, it isn’t the merciful that need your mercy.  It is the merciless that desperately need it.   It is those that are spiteful, that place conditions on their love and acceptance of you in their midst.

I know this all too well, I’ve been challenged the last few days with showing mercy to those who are condemning others, living life contrary to the life they are called to, the life they look to me to encourage.

And I struggle to be merciful to them, part of me just wants to write them off as they write others off. But that would feed the monster that would deny mercy.

Complicated isn’t it!  🙂

Mercy doesn’t facilitate mercilessness.  Nor will it facilitate sin.  It does facilitate reconciliation, forgiveness, love.   In fact, in the Old Testament, love and mercy are both used to translate one word, “cHesed”.  I am not sure the are synonyms, but I do think you can’t have one without the other.  Mercilessness is not loving, and to love requires you to show mercy.

Even to those who don’t deserve it.

Even to those who aren’t merciful to you or others,

Even to those who you fear.

For those who are merciful themselves are, because they know God’s mercy.

Such is what it means to be Christlike, to imitate the Lord God who loves and is merciful to you.  For it is only in Christ that we would even begin to desire to show that kind of mercy, or as St Josemaria talks of, to be able to yield no matter who it is who presses us.

Something to ask God to help you struggle with…. today.

I know I have….and probably will a number of times.

Lord have mercy!

Escriva, Josemaria (2011-01-31). Furrow (Kindle Locations 1356-1358). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.

About justifiedandsinner

I am a pastor of a Concordia Lutheran Church in Cerritos, California, where we rejoice in God's saving us from our sin, and the unrighteousness of the world. It is all about His work, the gift of salvation given to all who trust in Jesus Christ, and what He has done that is revealed in Scripture. God deserves all the glory, honor and praise, for He has rescued and redeemed His people.

Posted on December 9, 2015, in Devotions and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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