By David Brown
I was ushered into the chambers of the City Judge one evening in my small home town. I was appearing in court for a traffic violation. To tell you the truth, I was very fortunate to have received a mere moving violation considering my other illegal activities. It was the early 1970’s and I was a long haired, bell bottom jeans wearing, marijuana smoking, party guy. I was the boy that mommas warned their daughters about. I was just looking for a “good time” but every once in a while, my good time got me into trouble.
I was somewhat irritated that I had to make this time consuming appearance but I pled to the minor charge when requested by the judge. “I’m guilty”, I said…with a smirk on my face. “Well, do you want justice or mercy” the judge asked. Surprised by the question, I quickly adjusted my attitude and asked for mercy.
“That’ll be $27.50”, he said. I know that doesn’t sound like much now, but at the time, it was a lot of money for a 19 year old kid who spent most of his money on destructive behavior. Now, I wasn’t really sure if I’d received justice… or mercy but I paid the fine and made a quick exit. By the way, that judge just happened to be me stepdad! I never have been able to get him to tell me if I received justice or mercy that day.
I was a young, somewhat less than smart kid. However, I did understand one thing. If given a choice between justice and mercy…I’ll take mercy. I don’t want what I deserve! I want something better than that.
I’m so thankful that God is a God of mercy! He’s a God a justice, but He would rather mete out mercy. God loves people and he has no desire to see them get their just rewards. Oh no! He’d much rather give them His compassion, His forgiveness and His mercy!
Over and over in the Psalms we are told that the Lord is good and His mercy endures forever!
I absolutely LOVE the 103rd Psalm. It’s all about His mercy and his merciful acts toward men!
Psalm 103:1014 New Living Translation
1 Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name.
2 Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me.
3 He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases.
4 He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies.
5 He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!
6 The Lord gives righteousness and justice to all who are treated unfairly.
7 He revealed his character to Moses and his deeds to the people of Israel.
8 The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
9 He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever.
10 He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.
11 For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.
12 He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.
13 The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
14 For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust.
I’m so glad that God remembers our human weakness. We in turn, need to remember His mercy. I believe that every human being on the planet should be calling out to God for his mercy right now! America needs mercy. Our cities need mercy. Blacks, Whites and Hispanics all need His mercy. Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike all need His mercy. Our political leaders need mercy. The sick, the suffering, the poor and yes, the rich, the powerful, the affluent…all need His mercy!
Perhaps you’re suffering with sickness, or injustice, or the judgment of others. You need God’s merciful hand of kindness to help you…as it helped me way back in the ’70’s. Not too long after that court date, I cried out to God for His mercy! He answered too. God restored my life and my relationship with Him! God wiped the smirk off my face. He granted repentance and faith to my heart and then he forgave me and liberated me from a life of sin and selfishness. He forgave me in his MERCY! How thankful I am! Then, in His mercy he gave me a purpose in life…Telling others about His mercy!
God loves you! He is good! His mercy endures forever! He still has mercy for you, no matter what condition your life is in. No matter what your situation is…our loving Father in heaven has mercy, compassion, kindness and a healing, saving hand for you!
Let’s all ask Him for MERCY!
Be sure and watch the featured video message this month on my website. It’s all about a man who cried out to Jesus for mercy…and received it. It will help you receive His mercy too.