Mercy changes entire lives
I invite you to give thought to how the Lord’s mercy changes lives. You see, at the very least, it was His mercy which compelled Jesus to the cross of Calvary in place of sinners. His love moved Him to give; not simply to give from the things He possessed, but to give Himself entirely.
Consider for a moment, how God, who is “rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ – by grace you have been saved” (Ephesians 2:4-5). Put simply, God’s compassion for we sinners motivated Him to act outside of time and space. He did this by placing us in Christ while we were still dead in our sin awaiting regeneration by the Holy Spirit. This enormous act was done by grace because, we were not yet repentant, we were so overwhelmed by sin that we had no spiritual life within us which would enable us to repent.
God is mercy perfect. His mercy shows unrelenting compassion. It’s not soft thinking, but it is soft hearted. It’s not gullible, but it’s wise in assessing situations and people. It’s not unforgiving, but it is thoughtful as to how it works forgiveness out. God’s mercy constantly looks for the best way to express itself in order to maximise the Lord’s glory. For us, this means God initiates all the required changes in our lives, beginning before salvation, even before He created the world (Eph 1:4).
So, our entire relationship with God, from beginning to eternity, is totally dependent upon God and His mercy. All the necessary changes in our lives are compassionately and invisibly orchestrated by the Lord; motivated and governed by mercy.
When David was given the option of being disciplined by man or God for his sin, David said; “let me fall into the hand of the Lord, for his mercy is very great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.” (1 Chronicles 21:13). David’s attitude had changed and grown in understanding of the nature of God. This enabled him to make a decision that best honoured the Lord. He understood that at the heart of Yahweh’s holiness is mercy, compassion that calculates and synchronises justice with love.
Mercy is never stagnant or stationary, standing off at a distance. Rather, it moves, it draws near so it can do something. We see this best in God’s Son, Jesus Christ.
The difference between God and us is this; God’s intrinsic nature and desire is merciful. However, for us, mercy does not come naturally. Humans require mercy to be introduced from an source; and that source God the Holy Spirit. This change begins for us at the cross of Calvary with salvation.