Mercy

Mercy

Today’s Scripture Selection: Micah 6:8

“He has shown you, O man, what is good.  And what does the LORD require of you?  To act justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.”

I’ve always loved this Scripture passage from the prophet Micah.

It’s one of those that I turn to when I need to sort of re-set my spiritual and moral compass.

What do I mean by that?

I mean that sometimes, when the world seems particularly crazy, it’s helpful to just get back to basics and remember that God has been pretty clear on some things.

One of those things is that, while we sometimes like to complicate matters, God – often through the prophets – reminds us that our action toward Him and toward others can sometimes be very simple.

I don’t mean that the action we are to take is necessarily easy to do.  I just mean that God has been clear about it.  There isn’t a lot of “wiggle room” when it comes to loving others “as we have been loved” by Christ.

I also love the fact that Micah talks here not just about doing mercy – but actually loving mercy.

It seems to me that here the instruction is again very clear.  We aren’t supposed to show mercy grudgingly, when we have to do it, like it or not.

We are called as the people of God to take pleasure in showing mercy – to actually love being merciful to others.

The world can be a crazy place and people are often in dire need of justice and mercy.  Can we be humble enough to be instruments of both, in a loving way?

I believe, with God’s help, we can.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, show me opportunities to not only act as you would have me act – but delight in it as well.  AMEN.

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. “Elpis” is the Greek word for “expectant hope.” He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors, and a member of Spiritual Directors International. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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