Monday, February 10, 2014

Mercy, the unbelievable compassion offered by God (Psalm 116:1)

SCRIPTURE: Psalm 116:1 (TM) – larger reading Psalm 116
I love God because he listened to me, listened as I begged for mercy.

Years after the death of President Calvin Coolidge, this story came to light. In the early days of his presidency, Coolidge awoke one morning in his hotel room to find a cat burglar going through his pockets. Coolidge spoke up, asking the burglar not to take his watch chain because it contained an engraved charm he wanted to keep. Coolidge then engaged the thief in quiet conversation and discovered he was a college student who had no money to pay his hotel bill or buy a ticket back to campus. Coolidge counted $32 out of his wallet -- which he had also persuaded the dazed young man to give back! -- declared it to be a loan, and advised the young man to leave the way he had come so as to avoid the Secret Service! (Yes, the loan was paid back.) 

We are quicker to plead for mercy than to offer it or at least that has been my observation. God’s mercy is unbelievable compassion offered at an extremely difficult time to undeserving individuals.

God understands the circumstances of our lives and acts accordingly. Coolidge sought understand and acted with mercy. A little knowledge goes a long way to place salve on the wounds of the soul.

Today we will meet people are hurting beyond anything that we can imagine. Would their life be better, just a little, if they would receive mercy from just one individual that they meet on the road of life? Could God be placing us on their path so that he can show mercy through us?

One of my mentors, Wallace Chappell, told me once: “It takes as much grace to receive a gift than it does to give a gift.” Mercy is similar. Mercy requested should also be mercy given… at least that is a worthy goal to work towards.

Show your mercy to us freeing us to show mercy to others.

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