Verse 7 Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
We continue our looking at the beatitudes to see how they help us live out eternal resolutions.
Mercy is one of those words we toss around in the church that many don't understand. There is also some misunderstanding about mercy in our world so it is a word that gets used and abused. In its simplest form it means to not give the punishment that was earned. God's mercy is shown to His children by His not giving us the death penalty as our sins require.
Jesus understood the danger of our forgetting how much we have been forgiven and requiring full restitution from others for what is done to us. Though He has forgiven our sins through His death, we struggle to show mercy to those who have said something harsh to us, even though there is no comparison in their sin against us and our great sin against Him.
This doesn't mean that we shouldn't hold people accountable according to their actions, allowing them to walk all over us. No, there is no reason why we should allow or welcome people's mistreatment. Mercy isn't about letting evil win or even tolerating evil. Mercy is about treating others with compassion.
When we show mercy we are reflecting Christ's actions towards us. It is a way that we can shine His light to the world that is being influenced by the evil one and his followers. There will always be evil in the world but that means there will also be those who need our compassion, those who need the love of Christ shown to them through our acts of mercy.
It may do us well to meditate on all the ways Christ has been merciful to us so that we stop looking at being offended in light of our own feelings and see it in light of what we have been forgiven.
Making It Personal
When has someone showed you mercy? Have you showed someone mercy? Who could use your mercy today?
Making It Personal Kids
What does mercy look like? Has anyone ever showed you mercy? Who needs your mercy today?
Father, we can't thank You enough for Your constant mercy. Give us the compassionate hearts we need to live lives of mercy so that Your light shines brightly in our world. In Jesus' name, amen.