The prophet Micah tells us what the Lord desires from His people:
"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, New International Version).
Maybe we should start by defining mercy. According to Merriam Webster mercy is:
1a : compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one's power
also : lenient or compassionate treatment
begged for mercy
b : imprisonment rather than death imposed as penalty for first-degree murder
2a : a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion
May God have mercy on us.
b : a fortunate circumstance
it was a mercy they found her before she froze
3 : compassionate treatment of those in distress
works of mercy among the poor
Okay. Got it. But what does it mean to love mercy? I think "compassionate treatment of those in distress," a an act of loving mercy. We may have the right to punish or harm a person, instead we forgive and show compassion. This is mercy.
Let's dig deeper. Real mercy has an element of sacrifice. I've always been impressed when family members can forgive a person for murdering a loved one.
In Micah, God's word is clear that we are to love mercy.
If we want to see a picture of what mercy looks at, we can open our Bibles. Time after time God shows mercy to mankind. Old Testament and New Testament stories or parables touch on mercy.
“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful” (Luke 6:36, NIV).
Titus 3:5 NIV says, "he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit..."
Sometimes, it's easier to show mercy than other times. If this cutie did something wrong, it'd be easy for me to show her mercy. How could I not show her mercy.
No matter what the situation though, God expects us to show mercy. I'd love to hear your stories of mercy. Thanks!
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