Blessed are the Merciful
The court sat in stunned silence, as the young defendant was led into the courtroom. All of fifteen, he looked far from being a perpetrator. The only visible signs were the orange overalls and the cuffed hands, while his chained feet displayed an evident amble. All eyes were fixed on him, and he cringed under the gaze of all who were present, while he slowly settled in his seat, his head hanging low. He was being scrutinized by all for any signs of remorse, and there were none.
After the judge pronounced the sentence, the victim, Suliman Ahmed’s mother, walked up to her son’s killer and hugged him, much to the surprise of all present there. In her victim impact statement, she said, looking at the defendant, “I do not hate you. I cannot hate you. That is not our way. Showing ‘rahmah’ or mercy, that’s our way.” She later embraced the defendant’s mother, acknowledging that, the tragedy had equally impacted both of them, as they had to now live their lives, without their sons… one whose life was taken away, and the other, who would live, yet would have no life as he would spend the rest of his days in prison.
As I read this article, I couldn’t help but think, over and over again about Suliman’s mother and what she had stated… her way was not that of hatred, but that of mercy. Her heart posture was that of love and compassion!! She was willing to let go, of her tragic past and step into a future of hope, as she chose to be merciful. A very different approach and quite contrary to the ways of the world, that is wrought with criticism and judgment.
But, we worship a God who is merciful and through His Son, Christ Jesus, we have been called to be merciful and to freely and frequently extend mercy to those who do not deserve it.
Matthew 5:7 Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Christ’s Sermon on the Mount, opens with the beatitudes-the affirmation of blessings and the declaration of God’s grace. God has blessed us with mercy, because He Himself, is mercy personified. Therefore, our mercy that we extend to another, comes from God Himself.
I understand mercy much better, because I had once been in a place, wanting for the Lord to be merciful unto me. It was a place of absolute brokenness and therefore the need for sheer divine mercy, for me to sustain through that time of distress, was immense. It was also a place, from where, I had a view of a God, who true to His nature, poured out His mercy upon me. Because He did that, I now operate from that power and grace that is so ingrained in my heart, that I am now able to understand what it would mean to be merciful unto another. So to be merciful, we need to have experienced the free and undeserved mercy of God.
When I look at the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37), I understand how mercy truly translates from an internal desire to an external action, as displayed by the Samaritan toward the Levite.
The Samaritan saw the trouble, the Levite was in.
He immediately responded with a heart posture of compassion or pity.
He moved into a position of action, whereby he went to the Levite, bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine, put the man on his donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him.
Now this is the best part.
He took care of the Levite, knowing fully well, that he was an enemy.( We know from Scripture that the Jews, didn’t think highly of the Samaritans. Let’s face it - they were enemies!)
I think Suliman’s mother understood perfectly well, what it meant to be merciful and that is what she demonstrated. She saw the troubled young lad, responded with compassion, moved into action by hugging, comforting and forgiving him, despite the fact that he had shot and killed her dear son for money.
There are great lessons for us to learn and reflect on. We, who have received mercy from God, need to be merciful, and thereby experience the riches of heavenly blessings, in accordance with the will of God.
That is why, Jesus says in Matthew 9:13 “But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice .’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
I think it is imperative for us to respond with mercy and with a loving disposition, because we ourselves receive mercy, knowing and recognizing our own imperfections in an already imperfect world.
As a child of God, I am always in want of His great mercy. I keep going back to Him, because I know, He eagerly waits for me to do so. Then I see, feel and experience His blessings, and I can’t help but say, ‘Indeed Lord, Your mercies are new every morning.’
Jrevolution, is a nonprofit organization working with people of all walks of life to find fulfillment & purpose within their lives by giving them the tools they need to live a purpose driven life of impact. Many people live their day to day lives searching for purpose and meaning, but no matter how many different methods they use to find this, they never seem to obtain it. You may be in need of a new beginning. Find out more on www.jrevolution.net