All weekend, I consider the great mercy of God. We need His mercy. We appeal to His mercy most of all. He cannot change from His merciful character. I love how David cries out to allow himself to fall into the hands of God, not men, because God’s mercy is great (1 Chronicles 21:13). Mercy: God’s gracious favor to give us what we do not deserve.
Throughout the Psalms, we read cries of mercy. The writers knew to appeal to God’s mercy as what we perhaps need more than anything else. In the New Testament, we read of this mercy as “tender mercy” (Luke 1:78). In translation, I get the sense that this mercy is tender because it flows from the inner heart of God. This mercy is God’s wonderful blessing on those who do not deserve it. It expresses itself most profoundly as the mercy we see in the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. When we recognizes God’s mercy, we think about Jesus. When we need God’s mercy, we approach God because of Jesus.
When people see Jesus, they often cry out, “Have mercy on me, a sinner!” I spend a great deal of time considering Ephesians 2:6 which prompted my book Seated with Christ, but verse 4 and 5 carry their own power: “But because of his great love for us, God who is rich in mercy made us alive in Christ.” Our God is rich in mercy; it’s this mercy we find when we approach His throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16). This mercy gives us “a new birth into a living hope” (1 Peter 1:3). Every good thing happening to you–and every bad thing from which you’ve been spared–originates in mercy. God’s ability to make beauty from sorrow flows from His mercy on our lives. It’s His mercy that sustains this day and this very moment. I pray we see it and experience it more and more. God have mercy on us!
Because of God’s mercy shown to us, we show mercy to others who do not deserve it–just as we are undeserving. We pray blessing over enemies and those who harm us. We pray that mercy would rest on not just our household (2 Timothy 1:16), but also on the homes of those around us.
This December, I rejoice in God’s mercy. When I think of the birth of Christ, I think of mercy. I pray for a deeper understanding of this mercy, and I pray that God’s mercy covers us. We need it more and more and most of all.