I probably say this phrase 100 times a day. It’s my go-to for surprise and wonder, or just excitement. Yeah. I guess I’m old-fashioned. I probably use it so much it doesn’t have the same meaning. But for me it’s better than a lot of other words I could say. Mercy!

But what is being offered here? Mercy is being offered to those who share mercy with others. The preconditon is that you are merciful to other people, where they wrong you or offend you. Your reaction is to extend mercy. Maybe they didn’t understand you? Maybe they are having a bad day? Maybe they too are sinners and they need the love of Jesus? Mercy!

But how can someone have this quality of mercy? This depends on how you understand the Beatitudes. When I read them, I see a gradual progression, from “poor in spirit” which we all qualify for, to “persecution” which is what happens when you live authentically as a Christian. Each point along the way is a sign of maturity for the believer. “Mercy” occurs about halfway through this list. This mercy isn’t something you are expected to start off with, but something you will need to develop and mature. Mercy!

So when you are tempted to give someone the third degree, remember you are called to mercy. As we show mercy to others, God shows mercy to us. Something to think about on this Sunday.

God bless you today!

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I've been in ministry in the Christian Churches/ Churches of Christ for 20+ years. Finished my doctorate in Biblical Studies in 2015. Serve today as a Hospital Chaplain.

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