RSS

Tag Archives: compassionate

My God is…Trustworthy Psalm 111:6-8

Psalm 111:6-8 He has shown his people the power of his works,

Who do you trust?

Who do you trust?

giving them the lands of other nations.
The works of his hands are faithful and just;
all his precepts are trustworthy.
They are established for ever and ever,
enacted in faithfulness and uprightness.

A name you can trust 

When we lived in England, there was a commercial that always ended “A name you can trust” (yes it’s true I can’t remember what the commercial was for, but I remember the catch phrase). People are always trying to get us to trust them. They want to be believed. They want people to understand and identify with them.

Who do you trust? 

I trust people who have proven themselves to be trustworthy. My parents – I trust them wholeheartedly. They have always been reliable. I can come to them with any problem, and they will be there for me. They’ve proven their trustworthiness through their consistent love and care for me. Did I always think what they wanted me to do was the right thing for me at the time? No. Sometimes they seemed unreasonable, strict and maybe even controlling, but I was always shown to be wrong. Their actions worked for my best interest. Now they’re not perfect, but they are trustworthy.

Why do you trust? 

Do you trust people blindly? Are you unforgiving? Do you think just because someone doesn’t agree with you that they’re not trustworthy? Truth is, people are not always trustworthy. They fail us. They are sinful. But the Truth is God is trustworthy. He does follow through on His precepts. This world is full of evil, but for those who believe we look beyond the here and now towards our future in heaven with Him. We trust that while we live on this imperfect world, God is still active and moving us towards Him and away from the evil of this world.

Finding Comfort in His word

Psalm 111 is a great Psalm talking about God & His trustworthiness. I hope you find it a blessing this morning.

Psalm 111[a]

Praise the Lord.[b]

I will extol the Lord with all my heart
in the council of the upright and in the assembly.

Great are the works of the Lord;
they are pondered by all who delight in them.
Glorious and majestic are his deeds,
and his righteousness endures forever.
He has caused his wonders to be remembered;
the Lord is gracious and compassionate.
He provides food for those who fear him;
he remembers his covenant forever.

He has shown his people the power of his works,
giving them the lands of other nations.
The works of his hands are faithful and just;
all his precepts are trustworthy.
They are established for ever and ever,
enacted in faithfulness and uprightness.
He provided redemption for his people;
he ordained his covenant forever—
holy and awesome is his name.

10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
all who follow his precepts have good understanding.
To him belongs eternal praise.

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 18, 2012 in My God is Trustworthy, Psalm

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

My God is Gracious and Merciful Psalm 86:15

Psalm 86:15 – But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.

What’s the difference? 

God is gracious and merciful. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I use these terms interchangeably. I don’t know if I even usually think about the difference between them. I was thinking, if there wasn’t a difference, why would the Psalmist use both words? To be poetic? Possibly, but I think the words were chosen more deliberately.

Merciful – Full of Mercy

So what does mercy mean?

mer·cy

1. compassionate or kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one’s power;compassion, pity, or benevolence: Have mercy on the poor sinner.

2. the disposition to be compassionate or forbearing: an adversary wholly without mercy.

3. the discretionary power of a judge to pardon someone or to mitigate punishment, especially to send to prison rather than invoke the death penalty.
4. an act of kindness, compassion, or favor: She has performed countless small mercies for her friends and neighbors.
5. something that gives evidence of divine favor; blessing: It was just a mercy we had our seat belts on when it happened.
God is Merciful 
Again, I love the study of words. It is amazing how full the word mercy is when you look at all its meanings. Having a merciful God means that he has compassion on me. He is compassionate without me deserving it. I may deserve death, but God is merciful to me and changes my sentence from death to life with Him in heaven. He performed His biggest act of mercy or compassion on me when He saved me from my sins by sending His son Jesus to die for me. I deserved to go to hell, because of my sins that turned me away from Him, but instead he was merciful and provided me a way out so that I might not end up in hell, but in heaven with Him.
God is Gracious
So we know that gracious and merciful often go together, so what can be added by including gracious to the list of who God is? Well let’s see if the definition of gracious helps us figure that out at all.
gra·cious 

1. Characterized by kindness and warm courtesy.
2. Characterized by tact and propriety: responded to the insult with gracious humor.
3. Of a merciful or compassionate nature.
4. Condescendingly courteous; indulgent.
5. Characterized by charm or beauty; graceful.
6. Characterized by elegance and good taste: gracious living.
7. Archaic Enjoying favor or grace; acceptable or pleasing.
We see by the third definition that, yes, grace is closely related to mercy. Grace is to have that merciful nature, or should I say you can’t be gracious without having a merciful nature. I like the first definition of God being described as having kindness and a warm courtesy. Today I’m going to see my Great Aunt and Uncle. They have that gift. That kindness and warm courtesy. Maybe you know someone who has that too. How does it feel to enter their home. Are you uncomfortable? NO! They make you feel good and welcomed. God wants that for us as well. He’s not trying to make us feel bad, but instead he wants us to shed our old ways so we can have nothing standing in our own way from enjoying Him to the fullest.
It’s funny, while the other definitions may not seem like they are directly related to who God is, they too make a fuller, richer picture of what it means to be gracious, and all of those things are true about our Lord.
Merciful and Gracious
God is not only going to give us another chance at life, but He’s going to be gracious in the way He does it. Because of His mercy we are able to enjoy His favor and grace as He makes us acceptable and pleasing to Him. May we grow in grace and mercy for those around us as a reflection of the grace and mercy we have received.
 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

My God is…Compassionate Nehemiah 9:16-21

Wandering around in the desertNehemiah 9:16-21 – “But they, our ancestors, became arrogant and stiff-necked, and they did not obey your commands. They refused to listen and failed to remember the miracles you performed among them. They became stiff-necked and in their rebellion appointed a leader in order to return to their slavery. But you are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love. Therefore you did not desert them, even when they cast for themselves an image of a calf and said, ‘This is your god, who brought you up out of Egypt,’ or when they committed awful blasphemies.

“Because of your great compassion you did not abandon them in the wilderness. By day the pillar of cloud did not fail to guide them on their path, nor the pillar of fire by night to shine on the way they were to take. You gave your good Spirit to instruct them. You did not withhold your manna from their mouths, and you gave them water for their thirst. For forty years you sustained them in the wilderness; they lacked nothing, their clothes did not wear out nor did their feet become swollen.

Because of your great compassion you did not abandon them in the wilderness.

Have you ever felt abandoned? Was it true? I know that for me there was a time when I felt abandoned. It was around October and November of 2001. Just after the tragedy of September 11. My husband was overseas, and I was home in Tucson (thousands of miles away from my parents and sister), with my twin 2 1/2-year-old boys. The boys wouldn’t sleep. I was worn out. The events in September had drained the country, and I was no different. I was sure the country would go to war quickly, meaning my husband wouldn’t be coming home on time, and I would be stuck with these boys who never sleep. Then it happened. I began to have the symptoms I would later find out were from Multiple Sclerosis. I felt like I was abandoned in the desert. I felt like my husband wasn’t there when I needed him, and my family too was far away. I felt like I was going it alone. Those who should be there for me weren’t. But during that time, the Lord revealed himself to me, and helped me to see I needed to rely on Him, not my husband or family. He sent me great friends who helped me through that time (Kara and Sharon). I believe now, the time in the desert was a truly transforming time for me. Drawing me closer not further away from God.

But they, our ancestors, became arrogant and stiff-necked, and they did not obey your commands.

When you are a Stiff Necked person, you are said to be arrogant or stubborn. I also see it as not being able to change your ways or be flexible. I can think of a lot of times in my life where I was being stubborn or arrogant. I may have thought I didn’t have as many sins as someone else, or that the Lord blessed me more, because of something I did, or didn’t do, but the truth is we’re all stiff-necked at times. Denying the Lord and what he has done for us. We think we know better than God and ask like the Israelites to go back into captivity. We romanticized the past and think that if only we could go back to high school or college. Those were the days. But the truth is all of our problems would follow us through space and time, because they are part of who we are. But God doesn’t hold our stiff-necked ways against us. He is compassionate and slow to anger.

Last night in our Bible Study, we were looking at Nehemiah 8-10, and discussed this portion for quite some time. One of the things we heard from a commentary was that we can not escape God’s discipline, but we also can not exhaust God’s Patience. I found that to be a truly comforting statement. That yes sometimes I get myself into a mess of trouble. That sometimes I find myself wandering around in the desert, seemingly going around in circles. But God is still there. He’s still ready to help me, console me and save me from my sins.

You gave your good Spirit to instruct them.

Lord, You have given me so much. I have been blessed even when I didn’t recognize it at the time. It is true that you have our best interest at heart, and that you will bring us through whatever desert we’re crossing. You’ll provide what we need. Lord send your Spirit to guide me and instruct me as I go forward in life trying to serve you.

Are you stiff-necked?

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 29, 2012 in My God is Compassionate

 

Tags: , , , , ,

My God is…my deliverer Psalm 140:6-8

Psalm 140:6-8 I say to the LORD, “You are my God.” Hear, LORD, my cry for mercy. Sovereign LORD, my strong deliverer, you shield my head in the day of battle. Do not grant the wicked their desires, LORD; do not let their plans succeed.

You are my God, Have mercy on me

Definition of MERCY

a : compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one’s power; also : lenient or compassionate treatment <begged for mercy>
b : imprisonment rather than death imposed as penalty for first-degree murder
2a : a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion
b : a fortunate circumstance <it was a mercy they found her before she froze>
3: compassionate treatment of those in distress <works of mercy among the poor>
At the beginning of this week, my husband and I had the pleasure of going to a Prayer and Renewal Retreat. My husband had attended before, so he was in a different phase, but in Phase one, I was taught about two types of praying I hadn’t experience before: Lectio Divina and the “Jesus Prayer“. In the Jesus prayer, a phrase similar to the one in our text is used: “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.”
We all need mercy
Because of sin, I need of mercy. The Psalmist wants God to be a deliverer. This is no call for a UPS man. This is a call for someone to help you escape the inevitable. Think about when people ask for mercy. Picture it. I’m picturing the six-fingered man from the “Princess Bride” about to get killed by Inigo Montoya.
When I’m in a pinch, I’m always a bit more willing to make amends. I might say things like, “Lord, get me out of this and I’ll never do it again.” I want to bargain with God. I want him to deliver me from the pain I’m afraid is coming our way. I often forget to acknowledge the way He has already had mercy on me.
My God is my Deliverer
On the cross, Jesus took away all of my sins. Paid for all of my short comings, failings and mistakes. He did it because He loves me. He had mercy on me. I was in a pinch. I couldn’t have survived without Him, but because of His mercy, I’m not getting what I deserve, Hell. I’m getting the best of the best, a life with the one who loves me more than anyone else does. My Lord Jesus Christ.
What deliverer do you count on?
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 3, 2012 in My God is My Deliverer, Psalm

 

Tags: , , , , ,

My God is … Good Psalm 145: 9

Psalm 145: 9 – The Lord is good to all; He has compassion on all he has made. 

“God is Good. All the Time. All the Time, God is Good”

Have you ever heard that? I believe it. As I start this journey to learn more about God by looking at his attributes as described in the Bible, I decided to start here, because this is the attribute I lean on most. I need compassion from my Good God.

I’m not held accountable for my sin. 

God displays His compassion and goodness in so many ways in my life, but the one that is most important is that I’m not held completely accountable for my sin. Sure there are earthly consequences for my action, but if I were to be held accountable for being the sinner that I am I would be going to hell when I die. I’m not. Not because of anything I did. Not because I’m a good person (thank goodness – because most days someone I know would probably think I’m not), but because he shows me compassion through His Son Jesus Christ my Savior. Because of His Sacrifice on the cross, I get to go to heaven when I die, and that’s an exciting thing to me.

Placed in a Christian Family

But I find that He is compassionate for me in many other ways. Probably one that’s toward the top of my list is that I come from a Christian family. A family who has spent their whole lives in service to the Lord. Both as church workers and just those who care for others, my family has always had their focus on the Lord. That’s a huge blessing. My core family now, my husband, boys and I are all Christians as well. And perhaps this is where the Lord had a lot of compassion for me.

Given a Christian Husband

When I met my husband, I was a teacher in my church’s school. He wasn’t a Christian, and he wasn’t really going out of his way to learn about God. Because of my extensive knowledge of the kind of men I didn’t want to be with, I spotted the right one right away. I could tell he was different. But he wasn’t a Christian. I had been raised to look for a spouse who shared my beliefs. A man who would want to grow in our relationship together and with the Lord. Don’t let this fool you. This girl wasn’t that bright. I wasn’t going to let this wonderful man out of my sight. Christian or not, I was going to take the plunge.

We started dating, but I was very clear, come Sunday morning, you’ll know where to find me. I’ll be at church. He didn’t want to raise any red flags in my mind, so he said he’d like to join me. Then about two weeks after we started dating my pastor asked Don (my husband) if he would like to take an informational class about what we believe and maybe get baptized at the end of it. I thought, “Here we go, watch this guy run. Doesn’t my pastor know I’ve only been dating him for two weeks?” to my amazement, Don said he would like to go, and did get baptized. The Lord was compassionate and gave me the Christian husband I had desired in my heart even though I didn’t choose a man who started that way.

There are so many ways that God shows His goodness and compassion in my life. What are some of the ways He’s showing them to you?

 
2 Comments

Posted by on July 26, 2011 in God is Good, Psalm

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,