30 Days of Thanksgiving 3: Gratitude For Mercy

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:16 (NIV)

My last two sermons have been based out of some observations in Psalm 86 that I made several years ago as I read through the Psalms and Proverbs. In my sermon on the 16th (this past Sunday) I pointed out Psalm 86:3

Be merciful to me, O Lord,
    for I am calling on you constantly

I noted in my sermon that mercy was one of the first qualities Jesus noted to the twelve as noted in Matthew 5:7

God blesses those who are merciful,
    for they will be shown mercy.

and I pointed out that in the question and answer session which followed Jesus’ telling of the Good Samaritan that mercy was the point He wanted to make with the smug (as I see him) questioner who asked, “Who is my neighbor?”

“Now which of these three would you say was a neighbor to the man who was attacked by bandits?” Jesus asked. The man replied, “The one who showed him mercy.” Then Jesus said, “Yes, now go and do the same.”

I am grateful for the mercy of God and that is why the lead off verse in this post from Hebrews 4 is one of my valued scripture verses. When I think of mercy, I think of being passed by two math teachers in back to back school years even though I passed very few tests.

The first time is was out of the sheer goodness… and mercy… of her heart. The second time in a different class and teacher, it was from a “mercy rule” of “all homework submitted keeps you from flunking.”

How often I have I  flippantly disregarded God’s grace and mercy through my intentional disobedience and a spiteful spirit. And yet He has continued to show me grace and mercy even though I have not deserved it.

So I am grateful and thankful for God’s mercy. A mercy that is available to all who choose to accept Jesus’ offer of it.


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