An Act of Divine Favor

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.-Lamentations 3:22-23.

This week’s Word of the Spirit is “Mercy” not to be of confused with last week’s word “Grace.”

I’m guilty of confusing the meanings of these words. They may be alike in meaning but they are not the same. Hopefully I am not the only one who was confused by these words.

While studying the meanings of the two words I found a simple definition and a example I want to share with you. According to the website:

Mercy is defined as God not punishing us as our sins deserve. Deliverance from judgment.

Grace is defined as blessing from God despite the fact that we do not deserve it. Kindness to the unworthy.

The two are best illustrated in the salvation that is available through Jesus Christ. We deserve judgment, but if we receive Jesus Christ as Savior, we receive mercy from God and we are delivered from judgment. Instead of judgment, we receive by grace salvation, forgiveness of sins, abundant life (John 10:10), and an eternity in Heaven, the most wonderful place imaginable (Revelation 21-22). Because of the mercy and grace of God, our response should be to fall on our knees in worship and thanksgiving. Hebrews 4:16 declares, “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”Have you ever felt the need to cry out to God for help but didn’t? What stopped you? Guilt, embarrassment, shame or felt unworthy of God’s love and forgiveness?   

Lamentations 3:21-23 states: God willingly responds with help when we ask. His love and mercy are greater that any sin we believe God cannot forgive. He promises forgiveness.

There is no need to feel negative thoughts.

He is “slow to anger” and his love cannot be diminished (Exodus 34:6).

What area(s) in your life do you you need God’s help with? Financial problems? Marital problems?Addiction, or just in need of direction?       

Do you remember the popular game Mercy played on playgrounds all around the world? A game of strength and pain tolerance. The goal is to twist the opponent’s hands or bend the fingers until the opponent surrenders. Actually, I thought it was quite silly and didn’t see the point, but I won’t lie I did play the game. Call it peer pressure. Why would you want to inflict that kind of pain on yourself on purpose?

When you sin greatly, turn back to God, to be punished by him is far better than to take your chances without Him (2 Samuel 24:14). I would rather be punished by a God who loves me than by some kid on the playground who may or may not be as kind and forgiving.

Recently diagnosed with stage 2 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, Tonya continues to write for BoP when she is able. She doesn’t ask “Why me Lord?”  She embraces the journey God has set forth for her. The battle has already been won. God has walked before her and now He leads her to victory. Her Breath on Paper bio can be found here.



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