Monday, June 14


photo courtesy of Fazeel at picasaweb

“Blessed are the merciful,
for they shall obtain mercy.”
Matt. 5:7 NKJV

The above verse is the next statement in the beatitudes Jesus spoke in the Sermon on the Mount.

The dictionary defines ‘mercy’ as compassion, pity, benevolence, acts of kindness or favor, kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one’s power, or something that gives evidence of divine favor, blessing.

Vine’s says the Greek word for ‘merciful’ means “not simply possessed of pity but actively compassionate, is used of Christ as a High Priest, Heb 2:17, and of those who are like God, Matt 5:7.”

To ‘obtain mercy’ means to compassionate (by word or deed, specially, by divine grace), to have mercy on, to succor the afflicted, to bring help to the wretched, to show kindness, by beneficence, or assistance, to feel sympathy with the misery of another, and especially sympathy manifested in act.

Who comes to mind of a modern-day servant of compassion? Mother Teresa! She has been dubbed “an angel of mercy.” She said, “Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat.”

And what did she do? She desperately and consistently tried to fill those needs. Her active mercy-compassion knew no bounds.

Who was her example? Jesus. Scripture says, “But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them.” (Matt. 9:36 NKJV) Several other times, scripture says Jesus was filled with compassion for an individual.

As we are to follow Jesus’ example, we can apply to ourselves what Jesus said to Peter in a parable, “Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?” (Matt. 18:33 NKJV)

Are we touched with compassion for others? Are we actively seeking to be compassionate to all those that cross our paths? Do we go out of our way to be God’s hands of mercy kindness, sympathy, and assistance to one suffering in life? Sure, we may do so for family, friends, or even for some strangers.

But what about our enemies, those who offend us? Hmmm, another matter, isn’t it?

“Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.” (1 Peter 3:8-9 NKJV)

William Shakespeare wrote…

“The quality of mercy is not strain’d;
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest:
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.”

In need of mercy? Reach out to another. As the verse says, those who are merciful will receive mercy’s compassion.

May you and another be blessed as you spread mercy and compassion today!

This post is part of the One Word at a Time Blog Carnival. Hop on over to Bridget Chumbley’s site to view all the other participants.

11 Responses
  1. What a selfless example in Mother Teresa! I so would have loved to meet her.

  2. Terra Says:

    Mother Theresa personifies mercy, doesn't she? Thanks for this post.

  3. katdish Says:

    Mother Teresa is a shining example of compassion, and you've given us a great reminder to have compassion for not just those who love us, but those who do not.

  4. Glynn Says:

    When she stood in the U.S. Congress and lectured them and then-President Clinton on abortion -- she wasn't being political; she was being compassionate -- for the unborn.

  5. Marja Says:

    Another great post Lynn.
    I heard Brother Andrew (Open Doors)say "Lord, forgive us for our dry eyes", and he was talking about our lack of compassion. That really made me think too!

  6. Great post! I heard a story about Mother Teresa being interviewed. The interviewer asked her "When you pray to God what do you say?"

    She answered, "I listen."

    The interviewer then asked, "Well... what does God say?"

    She answered, "He listens."

    I think her compassion was fueled by Christ through an intimate and organic relationship.

    Thanks for sharing the post!

  7. I strive to be selfless. I need to let God use me.

  8. JC Dude Says:

    For me compassion is the fuel of mercy. Thanks for sharing and reminding us of the need to live it.


  9. Sheila Deeth Says:

    Seems like many in our own towns and neighborhoods are in need of mercy.

  10. Great post, Lynn. I love Mother Teresa. There is much controversy in NYC now because the owners of the Empire State Building won't allow special lighting to honor her birthday (although they have honored some much less deserving). I think it's causing many to take note of her character and accomplishments.

    ps - I was asked to speak at my church and will be using the book you sent me in developing my message. Thanks again!

  11. Anonymous Says:

    Lovely post, Lynn. Mother Teresa is a perfect example. I wish it wasn't so hard to show compassion to those who have wronged us... thanks for this great reminder.