With everything going on in the world, we could all use a little mercy. Mercy can be shown in different ways. Dictionary.com defines mercy as an act of kindness, compassion or favor. The latter three words are the same, yet different in their own right. Kindness is the act of doing something nice for someone without expecting anything in return. When showing compassion, you desire to take away or end the suffering of another. In the act of showing favor, one is said to be approved or thought highly of. When I think of the word “kindness,” my 11 year old son comes to mind. Although he is the atypical 11-year-old boy, he is the sweetest little boy I know. He is always looking for ways to show kindness to others.
[pullquote width=”300″ float=”right”]
God provided us His blueprint in which to fashion our lives after…The Bible. @Grace_and_Such
Another instance of Niles’ sweet spirit was when we passed a homeless person on a very hot scorching Texas summer day. We were sitting at a red light and Niles kept looking out of his window. I asked him what was wrong. He asked why the man was walking back and forth with a sign asking for food. I explained that the man was homeless. He then asked if I had any dollar bills so he could give the man some money. I have a very bad habit of not carrying cash with me. I told him that I didn’t and he instantly became sad. Again I asked him what was wrong and he said it wasn’t fair that the man didn’t have a home or anything to eat. That day Niles showed compassion and the next day began packing a bag of goodies: 2 slices of bread in a sandwich baggie, a packet of peanut butter & jelly, a small can of pork & beans, a small carton of milk and pack of crackers. He said he had to feed the homeless. This little boy never ceases to amaze me. His genuine care for others is remarkable and will always warm my heart.
In the last several years, God has shown me favor in a ginormous way. My dad used to kid me and say that I am God’s favorite daughter because it is and was very apparent that God’s hand was on my life. When I made up my mind to leave my marriage, pack up our house and take my kids to a shelter, my heart was broken. Yet, during those 8 weeks in the shelter, the staff showed my kids and me favor. Whatever need we had was provided for. Whenever we were running late because of a baseball game, the staff made sure we had food to eat when we got back. The nun who oversaw the shelter wanted to make sure my oldest son had clothes that fit and went to buy him clothes and underwear. They didn’t have to do any of what they did, however, God was with me and His hand on the kids and me. When He promised to never leave or forsake us, He meant it. In fact, I didn’t deserve any of what He was doing in my life at that time, however, out of His love for me, He kept His promises.
Mercy takes on different faces in different situations, however, at the root of whatever face rears itself, God is present. According to Psalm 103:8, “The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.” Psalm 145:9 states, “The LORD is good to all; He has compassion on all He has made.” Titus 3:5 further indicates, “He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. …” Job 10:12 declares, “You have granted me life and favor, and Your care has preserved my spirit.” Accordingly, 2 Samuel 2:6 says, “May the LORD now show you kindness and faithfulness, and I too will show you the same favor because you have done this.” I could go on for days with examples of the faces of mercy throughout scripture, however, I think you get my point.
God provided us His blueprint in which to fashion our lives after…The Bible. It’s pages are full of examples to support Niles’ kind and compassionate spirit and the favor shown to the kids and me at what should have been a very depressing time for us. When we humbly kneel at our Heavenly Father’s feet, cast our cares on Him, trust and believe that He will do exactly what He says He’ll do, He will show us each and every face mercy has. He will place people in your path who are the Spirit in the flesh. I double dog dare you to go out and show mercy to a stranger, a friend, loved ones, etc. One simple, kind act can mean the world to an unsuspecting soul.