Mercy

I pray to you, O Lord, my rock.
Do not turn a deaf ear to me.
For if you are silent,
I might as well give up and die.
Listen to my prayer for mercy as I cry out to you for help,
as I lift my hands toward your holy sanctuary …

Praise the Lord!
For he has heard my cry for mercy.
The Lord is my strength and shield.
I trust him with all my heart.
He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy.
I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.     Psalm 28:1-2, 6-7 (NLT)

This week more than usual God has been speaking to me about His love. The word ‘grace’ is seen in Scripture from Psalms through all of Paul’s letters. Saul the Pharisee didn’t know about God’s grace but Paul the Apostle lived in it and wanted to make sure that the rest of us ‘got it’!

To me, it is impossible to talk about grace without talking about God’s mercy. Some might think that we spend too much time speaking about grace and mercy and not enough time talking about sin and repentance. I think about the Father being the perfect parent. Should a parent teach a child by telling them all that they should not do or by being an example and teaching the child what they should do? The answer would be both but I believe a child will respond and remember the positive input so I want to do more of that. I want to make sure my children understand grace and mercy that come from our Heavenly Father.

Every day I may have challenges. Sometimes these challenges seem overwhelming.

  • Parenting – There’s a reason that God designed a family to have two parents! And yet how many of us find ourselves becoming a single parent? Truly it was one of the hardest seasons of my life.
  • Sickness – (physical or mental)Whether it is my own health or the health of an elderly parent or my child, hospitalizations and appointments, tests, the financial strain, and daily care creates unknown stressors that can affect the health of those who are caring for the one who is ill.
  • The unexpected – Natural disasters, military deployment, traffic accidents, broken water pipes, or a car that just quits, difficulties sometimes just happen and usually not at a “good” time.

Rarely do challenges come one at a time. It may seem like I am running to keep all the challenges in their boxes.

I wish I had known as a 20-something how important spending time every day with God can be to my mental health and to navigating through whatever season I am in. Who else has more wisdom than God? Who else loves me more or wants anything better for me? Who else will listen to my cries for help and answer with more than platitudes or a shrug?

There is no other like my LORD in my life. Yes, He has given me a wonderful spouse, 2-3 close friends, and His Word to be a part of His support. But there is nothing that takes the place of time with Him that leaves me with peace in a world that is not peaceful. How great is God’s mercy.

Cry Out to Jesus written and sung by Third Day

 

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