Mystified By The Mercy of God

Keith KettenringChristian Living, God, Motley Christian

The mercy of God is fascinating, magnificent, timely, and compelling.

Mercy can be described as: God in His love and tenderness covering our unrighteousness and healing our brokenness.

Mercy is most often experienced when a person is struggling in their faith while dealing with life circumstances. Yet, this is when mercy is often unrecognized. The heartaches and problems blind us from seeing God in His goodness and love. We wonder why He is punishing us or what we’ve done to warrant His wrath. We misinterpret what we can’t understand.

In old Greek, the word for mercy comes from the word for olive oil, which, since the beginning of time, has been used to soothe the pain of wounds, bruises, and injuries. In Hebrew, the word for mercy means steadfast love. Historically, the word for mercy has many related connotations: tenderness, kindness, sweetness, endearing, compassion, and pity.

God is always and everlastingly merciful. God said of Himself, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin.” (Exodus 34.6-7)

Recently, my son Nate, in the midst of deep personal and relational struggles clearly experienced the mercy of God. Though God’s mercy is his daily food, in this case, God prepared a sumptuous meal containing all his favorites. Nate, who for the past five years has ridden and slaved over two decrepit yet working motorcycles –  was given a gorgeous 1995 Harley Davidson in mint condition by Mark, Rhonda’s brother. The gift of the Harley seemed to minister to Nate’s heart and body in ways hard to describe.

God is mercy.

We had a woman recently stay in our home through Airbnb. One of the great things about operating an Airbnb is that we don’t know who will come into our home who desperately needs what we have to offer. In this case, this Christian woman needed to unburden her heart to someone who’d simply listen. She told a story of long-time marital verbal and emotional abuse. She could not talk to her pastors about this since they “sided” with the husband, a highly successful “Christian” businessman. Their marriage ended in divorce. Yet, in the midst of the divorce when all “hell” was breaking loose, God brought the perfect house into her life which she was able to purchase. This became an oasis in her dessert storm. She teared up while sharing about God’s goodness during this difficult time.

God is mercy.

A friend who listens. A smile from a stranger. A ray of sunshine. A hug from a child. A beautiful flower. A verse of scripture that speaks. An awesome sunset. A chirping bird. All display God’s mercy.

Though God’s mercy is yours every second, He often displays it in unique ways just for you. If you’re in a difficult situation now, God’s mercy is right with you. You may not be able to see Mercy, but God is right there.

It doesn’t make sense how this works. But, who cares! That’s God’s business.

Count on it for your healing, strengthening, and whatever need you have.

It’s mystifying to us but not to God. Mercy is essential to who He is. Since He is always with us, so is His mercy.