I want mercy this morning. I need mercy. The mistake is to think mercy is only needed when I am guilty of something. Feelings can drive us to our knees in our great emotional need. But, God is unchanging. He sees us through the lens of what His Son did on Calvary every moment of every day.
"O Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleas for mercy! If you, O LORD, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared. I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in his word I hope;" - Psalms 130:2-5 ESV
He gives mercy because we ask for it... not because of our great need for it in the moment. He is merciful. We think our sin is the source of our great need and maybe the reason that God helps us.
"The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all." - Psalms 34:18-19 ESV
God sees us as righteous... upright... able to look Him in the face and ask for provision. Mercy is our provision.
"You who are of purer eyes than to see evil and cannot look at wrong" - Habakkuk 1:13a ESV
"But God, being 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-- and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus," - Ephesians 2:4-6 ESV
God is rich in mercy. He does not give it motivated by our sin. He gives it because of great love intertwined with grace. Everything God does is intertwined with grace. Favor apart from merit. The favor that the Father gives the Son that has been extended to people who are hidden in the righteousness of Christ.
Did the Father give the provision for the Son to heal the sick because they were sick? Many of those people were sick long before Jesus came on the scene. If it was need only they would not have needed Jesus to heal them. God would have just seen the need and acted.
Jesus asked for mercy, God heard Him and there were healings. Eyes were opened and ears were opened. There was healing and good news was preached to the poor (see Matthew 11:5)
Have you ever tried to help an addict who is not ready to receive help? There are things you can do but the bottom line is that until they are ready to be helped the cycle of addiction is going to continue and likely get worse before it gets better. Mankind as a whole is addicted to self-reliance. It might be the death that follows sin that brings us to the end of ourselves to finally cry out for mercy... but it doesn't have to be... humility can come as a cultivated action.
"And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder." - Matthew 21:44 KJV
Today I cast myself upon the rock in brokenness and let it break me further. The rock is where my pride and natural arrogance is pulverized.
I know I need mercy in good times and bad. I need it all the time equally. If I have it I won't see the heat when it comes. My roots will go deep and find the water in times of drought.
God, Give us mercy because of love today. Give us mercy in your graciousness. Give us mercy in the name of your Son. Thank you God for mercy that endures forever.