“Be merciful (responsive, compassionate, tender), even as your Father is merciful.” ( Luke 6:36 NRSV)
“I tell you, love your enemies. Help and give without expecting a return. You’ll never-I promise-regret it. Live out this God-created identity the way our Father lives toward us, generously and graciously, even when we’re at our worst. Our Father is kind; you be kind.” (Luke 6:35-36 The Message)
Stunned and blown away whilst repeatedly reading that verse and the former (35) in the way Eugene Petersen words it over and over again really has me reflecting on my life and asking myself, “Have I been living mercifully toward others even when I am hurt, overlooked, forgotten, spoken ill of and accused; could I still look on others with the same tender heart with which my merciful Father looks at me?”
As humans, we tend to hold others to a standard which isn’t always fair. It is so easy to say we forgive but often we rehash the sin and wrong doings of others, holding them accountable and putting them on trial over and over again. Saying that, I am suddenly struck by the fact that we also treat ourselves this way too.
My word for this year came to me on a prayerful walk only a few days ago: “RESET”. But how do I, we, reset and give ourselves and others a clean slate? How do we begin again and give others the opportunity to do the same? This reflection has really caused me to pause differently this morning. I find myself wondering what true spiritual growth looks like in this context, could I find a rhythm of living this way daily so that others see Christ in me?
Dear friends, I want to encourage us today to live out of the mercy we have received, to extend it to ourselves first and only then can we also truly extend it to others, living out of the overflow of the Father’s mercy toward us.
Prayer of Response:
“Father, thank You for Your endless mercy, thank You for reminding us that You are kind and delight in showing mercy and that mercy triumphs over judgement. May I look like Jesus today as I live out my identity as Your child, being like You in extending mercy, kindness and grace to others. Cause me to delight in giving it away, even when others are underserving and at their darkest, just like You love me at mine.” (Romans 5:8)
—Submitted by Samantha Müller
Samantha is a single mom living in Geneva, Switzerland with her 21 year old university going daughter. She describes herself as a lover of Jesus with a desire to allow His will to forever be done in her life and to live fully on purpose for Him pointing others to His saving grace.