Devoted Blog

Mercy Through All

August 14, 2019

Young Adult Takeover  

Blog by Taylor Hobson

Recently, all of our Wave Church Royal Youth leaders and students set off to their annual Summer Camp. In preparation for all that God does at camp, all the leaders took part in a devotional specially prepared by our pastors. This was a 14-day devotional covering topics that are near and dear to the heart of our church to prepare our hearts for the revival God wanted to entrust us with at Summer Camp. Day 3 of this devotional hit a tender spot for me. It spoke directly into an area that I oh-so-needed to work on. The topic was Mercy. Mercy for others and for yourselves. Mercy in tough situations. Mercy in the hidden moments. Mercy through all.

 

Colossians 3:12-14 (TPT)

“You are always and dearly loved by God! So robe yourself with virtues of God, since you have been divinely chosen to be holy. Be merciful as you endeavor to understand others, and be compassionate, showing kindness toward all. Be gentle and humble, unoffendable in your patience with others. Tolerate the weaknesses of those in the family of faith, forgiving one another in the same way you have been graciously forgiven by Jesus Christ. If you find fault with someone, release this same gift of forgiveness to them. For love is supreme and must flow through each of these virtues. Love becomes the mark of true maturity.”

 

 

I wanted to take you on the mental process this devotional took me on, hoping you can encounter a realization of your own. Whenever I read a verse, I love to dig deeper into words or phrases that seem out of place or I don’t quite know the definition of. Let’s look at “endeavor.” When I first read this, endeavor felt so out of place. I was looking for “try” or “work on” or any word showing an effort. Endeavor did not come to mind. According to Merriam-Webster, Endeavor means: “to attempt by an exertion of effort.” Exertion isn’t light work. You are to give your all, everything within you to this effort. The next phrase that caught me off guard was “to understand others.” Naturally, I like to fix things… or people. It doesn’t take long for me to figure out what needs to be fixed in a situation and to want to start working on it. So when Paul says to try hard, with everything in you, to understand others I halted.

 

I wanted to take you on the mental process this devotional took me on, hoping you can encounter a realization of your own. Whenever I read a verse, I love to dig deeper into words or phrases that seem out of place or I don’t quite know the definition of. Let’s look at “endeavor.” When I first read this, endeavor felt so out of place. I was looking for “try” or “work on” or any word showing an effort. Endeavor did not come to mind. According to Merriam-Webster, Endeavor means: “to attempt by an exertion of effort.” Exertion isn’t light work. You are to give your all, everything within you to this effort. The next phrase that caught me off guard was “to understand others.” Naturally, I like to fix things… or people. It doesn’t take long for me to figure out what needs to be fixed in a situation and to want to start working on it. So when Paul says to try hard, with everything in you, to understand others I halted

 

This caught me… convicted me. It is not God’s desire for me to fix every situation or person. His desire is for me to take time, understand people, and have mercy for them like He has had for me – over and over

 

Patience is hard enough for me, let alone unoffendable patience! The annoyance that streams from situations not gone our way. The offense that begins to take root when someone is promoted before we are. The pure frustration you can feel when people seem to be wrecking their own lives without even noticing. All of these instances require patience to wait on God’s plan, but how quick are we to jump to offense when we have to wait? I can’t speak for you, but sometimes I am ready to jump before I have even heard the whole story. Yet, Paul tells us to tolerate others’ weaknesses. He isn’t even talking about non-Christians… He is talking about our family in Christ. We are supposed to extend forgiveness and mercy to those who need it just as much as us. To think that we can receive God’s forgiveness for our sins, but that whoever offended us is not worthy of our forgiveness is to say that we are mightier than God; that our forgiveness costs more than His does. When you read it so plainly it sounds crazy, right? Of course, we know that God’s forgiveness and mercy trumps all, but day-to-day we tend to hold back from extending mercy as though it is something that needs to be earned.

I challenge you to make the choice to show mercy. Show it even when it hurts. Even when the offense feels unforgivable. Remind yourself that God has shown you mercy far greater than is comprehensible