Love Mercy

God, speaking through the Prophet Micah, said we should love mercy.

He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6.8

Not “liking" mercy. Not being “okay" with mercy. Not “tolerating" mercy. But having a deep affection for mercy.

Simply put, mercy is letting someone off the hook. Giving them a break. Not rehashing, not punishing, not saying what you could.

I am merciful when I don’t act out, nor hold onto my displeasure, disappointment, disapproval of
someone who deserves exactly that.

Mercy doesn’t come easy to any of us. Justice does. Criticism does. So does getting even, keeping score, reminding. But not mercy.

Jesus changes us.

He is merciful to the ungrateful (!) and wicked (!!) and to us (!!!). His mercy changes our hearts and empowers us to be merciful. Listen to Jesus speak:

But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

Luke 6.35-36

Father, Son and Spirit love mercy.

MercyI’m pretty sure there is someone in your life who may fear your disapproval or live with the burden
of your disappointment. A child. Spouse. Friend. Someone who works for you, with you. Someone
at church. A family member. And your evaluation may be right. They may indeed deserve your findings.

What a gift mercy could be to them (and yourself!). It could change the relationship, and please God, to throw them a life ring.

Love mercy. Cherish mercy. Be devoted to mercy, looking for ways to let people off the hook. Not because they deserve it, but because you have received mercy from Jesus.

 

Some more great words from God on loving mercy:

Isaiah 63.9, Micah 7.18, Matthew 5.7, 18.33, Mark 5.19, Luke 1.78, 1 Timothy 1.2, Titus 3.5, James 2.17, Jude 2.