Listen to this devotional:
Zechariah 7:9 – Long ago I gave these commands to my people: "You must see that justice is done, and must show kindness and mercy to one another." (GNB)
Psalm 95:6-8 – Come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. Today, if you would hear His voice, do not harden your hearts. (NASB)
When something difficult comes into my life unaware, I understand that it could be God wanting to do a work in my heart that He can only do using that predicament. Sometimes, I wonder why I don't "get it". Why don't I learn what God wants to teach me?
I see others go through some struggles in their lives, as well — whether it be physical, emotional, or spiritual. I also wonder what God is trying to teach them. Sometimes, when these people don't learn from their struggles, I tend to question also. Why don't they learn? Why do they want to go through yet another struggle? Why don't they get it?
Recently, as I was thinking about these issues, I realized that maybe, just maybe, God is trying to teach me something through their struggles as well. Once I thought that through, I felt much more at peace concerning the issues that each of us goes through. I realized that I needed to show kindness and mercy to those fellow-strugglers in my life. God is telling me in today's Psalm not to harden my heart. He wants to restore the joy of His salvation in us.
Psalm 51:12 – Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and sustain me with a willing spirit. (NASB)
Let's be aware of our own heart's attitude. Let's be kind and compassionate to others — and to ourselves. Let's not be harsh or harden our hearts.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, how we need You today. So many times, we condemn ourselves, even, when we go through the same things over and over. It seems like we never learn. Sometimes, we are harsh towards ourselves and others when we go through the same struggles over and over. Please forgive us where we fail You. Restore unto us the joy of Your salvation. Help us to be merciful to ourselves and to others. How we need Your grace! Amen.