Listen to this devotional:
Through God's perfectly gracious mercy to me thirty years ago, I was given a lastingly grateful heart, ever growing in thanksgiving, praise, and worship. Through my family's godly mercy I was given their total "let's not remember" forgiveness, and shared their desire to move only forward together with God into all that He has for us, and indeed into all that He is.
My family chose not to remember my sins. We have continued in each other's mercy and forgiveness, and have all continued to receive, live, and grow in God's mercy. Praise His wonderful name!
Matthew 5:7 – Blessed (happy, to be envied, and spiritually prosperous — with life-joy and satisfaction in God's favour and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy! (AMP)
Jesus encourages His children to extend mercy to others, as He extends His mercy to us. We may at times fail, but it's never too late to turn from unmercifulness and unforgiveness, never too late to stop rehearsing hurts, and never too late to choose not to remember sins, as our wonderful Lord does. God gave this godly ability to our family through His word, our repentance, and our humbly asking Him.
To extend mercy to others, even to ourselves, is a very gracious, vulnerable, and therefore brave act indeed. It means giving second, third — in fact, multiple — chances to others, just as we are all given by God's continued mercy in our own lives. Without His mercy, where would any of us be today? Where will we be tomorrow unless we receive continued mercy?
May we look at and be inspired by the promises in today's Scripture. As we are merciful, God promises us blessedness and the receiving of mercy.
Blessedness from God is all-encompassing. It reaches beyond all we can possibly know at this time in our lives. That is just one of the unknown joys of being in relationship with God: we can't know exactly all that He will yet do for us. We can't know exactly how He will bless us. And we can't possibly know how much more of His mercies and other attributes we will need to receive from Him.
The longer I live, the more convinced I become that all the gracious attributes Jesus extends to His children, He wants us to extend, share, and teach the same to others.
Isaiah 28:13a – Therefore the word of the Lord will be to them precept upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little, there a little. (RSV)
As we believe the "precepts" and "lines" of God's word, we gradually become Jesus' living epistles, His instrumental hands and feet, to bring His mercy, love, grace, forgiveness, light, et cetera to the world, in His holy name.
2 Corinthians 3:3 – Clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart. (NKJV)
Prayer: Thank You, Jesus, Lord, for Your example of extending mercy to us. Thank You for all the gracious extending of Your attributes to us. Thank You for the honour, privilege, joys, and multiple blessings we can experience as we in turn choose to extend mercy and Your other beautiful attributes to others in our limited way. Amen and Amen!