What we 30 Somethings need to hear, to embrace, and to extend to others in this season is Mercy. There is far too much criticism and judgment in the world already. We encounter it on a daily basis from a society that is set in opposition to God. We don’t need to encounter it from one-another.
In short, 30 Somethings need mercy from Christ and mercy for one another.
Mercy from Christ
What is amazing is that God sees every imperfection, every sinful motive, and every evil act we have ever committed (or entertained), and yet he still relates to us in love. “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him” (John 3:17).
God does not treat us as our sins deserve and he does not repay us according to our iniquities (Psalm 103:10). That’s mercy! One of my favorite verses is in Psalm 40, and every believer in Christ can claim this truth:
As for you, O Lord, you will not restrain
your mercy from me;
your steadfast love and your faithfulness will
ever preserve me!
Unrestrained mercy is the ultimate reality for every sinner who has trusted in Christ. Merciful and gracious is WHO GOD IS (Exodus 34:6). Believer, what you have to look forward to experiencing from God is MERCY! Yes, despite your failures and sins!
Richard Sibbes has famously written that “there is more mercy in Christ than sin in us.” Aren’t you thankful that God is merciful? And this mercy is available to all who will simply come to Jesus. No one is too far from his reach.
Mercy for one another
Surely, God’s mercy toward us should inform the way we relate to one another, right? Without question. Jesus said, “Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful” (Luke 6:36). When we exude mercy to others, we reflect the character of God.
On this point, let us take some helpful (and might I add, very convicting) counsel from the Puritan, Richard Sibbes, and learn to be merciful to others:
“Men must not be too curious in prying into the weaknesses of others. We should labour rather to see what they have that is for eternity, to incline our heart to love them, than into that weakness which the Spirit of God will in time consume, to estrange us. Pride is intolerable to pride.
The Holy Ghost is content to dwell in smoky, offensive souls. Oh, that that Spirit would breath into our spirits the same merciful disposition! … The church of Christ is a common hospital, wherein all are in some measure sick of some spiritual disease or other, so all have occasion to exercise the spirit of wisdom and meekness.
Let us put upon ourselves the Spirit of Christ… That great physician, as he had a quick eye and a healing tongue, so had he a gentle hand, and a tender heart.”
In this season, let’s strive to embrace God’s mercy, and to extend God’s mercy. Let’s aim to be a source of encouragement and blessing to others, as our God is to us. May we have a quick eye toward grace and a healing tongue for encouragement. Gentle and tender is the way of our Lord.
You can read the other posts in this 30 Something Series by clicking here.