Earlier this year, I attended a conference where a former colleague was one of the guest speakers. She was excellent and I was impressed with the ease, confidence, and grace with which she made her presentation.
I could not help but remember a few years earlier when a handful of us had been privy to information that could have potentially been detrimental to her career, marriage, and family. The facts were clear, provable, and serious but no action was taken against her.
Those in the know had spent a good amount of time deliberating their response. Should the parties be exposed? If not, would it appear as though they had gotten away with “murder” since rules had clearly been broken? What would be the risks of not holding them accountable; especially if the truth was revealed later on?
But watching the woman at the podium during that conference, hearing how she introduced her husband and children, and seeing how happy and healthy they all seemed in body, mind, and spirit, I knew that the right decision had been made. It occurred to me that it would have been a great tragedy had things turned out differently. This person had been given a second chance, and she had used it to move forward in the very best ways.
I think mercy always suits our case. I know it does mine. Big sins, little sins, they are all the same in God’s sight. Today I am mindful of at least a few of the many acts of mercy that have been bestowed upon me, and that I have not always gotten what I deserved for things said or not said, done or not done. I’ll bet if you thought real hard about it, you might also admit the same is true for you. Somehow, this awareness helps us to be humble, kinder, and far more willing to show mercy to others when we have opportunity, doesn’t it?
Jesus said, “Blessed are the merciful for they shall receive mercy.” (Matthew 5:7) Dear Lord, may it be so.
This Sunday’s sermon will be about forgiveness. I hope you will join us in worship or go online to read or listen sometime next week.
Grace and peace,