Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Luke 6:36-38
What am I like? You are unlike any other. How do I treat you? You don’t give me what I deserve. Instead, you give me what I don’t deserve. What do you mean by that? You give to me based on who you are and not based on what I have done. What have you done? I have sinned, wandered away and ignored you. I’ve done worse than that. At one time I was your enemy. I took your name in vain and even mocked you and your followers. I had no interest in you at all. So how did I treat you then? Well, there were a lot of negative consequences that I experienced as a result of my sin. When I was in deep pain, I cried out to you and asked for your help. Did I judge you? Did I condemn you? Did I turn you away? No, you did not. That is what I deserved. What did you receive instead? You gave me forgiveness. You welcomed me to you with your arms opened wide. You showered me with your kindness, mercy, and love. How did that feel to you? It felt great. I couldn’t believe it. I felt so loved and accepted. What did my kindness, mercy, and love, motivate you to want? I wanted to follow you. I wanted to be like you. I wanted to treat others just like you have treated me. Is that what you still want today? Yes it is.
Tell me how you want to treat others? When I am wronged, I will give forgiveness. When others don’t act like I would expect I will give acceptance rather than judgment. Instead of condemnation, I will give kindness, mercy and love. Why would you be willing to do this? Because that is exactly what you gave to me. I want to be like you and do what you have done and are still doing today.
What do you think will happen as you treat others with kindness, mercy, and love? I think that I will be a tool in your hands. I will be like a vessel through which your love can pour. My life will become like a signpost pointing people to you. Has that been happening in your life these days? Yes, I believe that even people who have regarded themselves as my enemies can see your life shining through me. Do you want more of this to happen? Yes, I do.
Father, change my heart and mind. I want to think and act as you do. Instead of judgment and condemnation I want to freely give kindness, mercy and love to others. Use my life as a signpost that points people to you. Amen
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