We Can Make a Difference
There is an obvious “if-then” aspect to Jesus’ mercy Beatitude. It is hard to miss this lesson in the parable of the two servants. The flow of mercy into my life is connected to it flow out of my life. I am not certain how God weighs the mercy He shows me against the mercy I show others, but I suspect He is not as concerned about a point for point scorecard as He is the condition of my heart.
But I close our time with this Beatitude with an additional perspective. If we can only give what we have received then Jesus’ teaching is as much about our endless resource of mercy as it is about our actions. We should never run out of mercy because God’s supply is infinite. There are times in our lives when it is difficult to show mercy because those who need it most have hurt us deeply. It is also hard to be merciful toward those who are struggling as a result of their own irresponsible behavior. In these cases mercy must sometimes be tempered with tough love and the establishment of boundaries, but it is necessary just the same.
When you are required to share mercy where mercy isn’t deserved, remember this: the inherent nature of mercy presumes something is undeserved. Perhaps you remember the words of the Apostle Paul when he wrote, “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:6-8).
“Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” What has God shown you?