Friday, June 23, 2023

Devotionals for the Heart: God's love, grace and mercy for humankind

A Promise of Mercy
A devotional by Essie Faye Taylor

“Because of the Lord’s faithful love we do not perish, for his mercies never end. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness! I say, “The Lord is my portion, therefore I will put my hope in him.” –Lamentations 3:22-24 (CSB)

I remember my unforgettable encounter with God.

It was the moment that I realized that I was a sinner. I was at odds with a Holy God because of my sinful nature and my thinking, practices, and habits. While my sin meant that I deserved to die, mercy declared that I would not receive what I deserved. Instead, I received compassion and kindness. I received forgiveness and remission of my sins by salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.

It’s important to note a few things about mercy. Mercy is extended to the offender. The innocent don’t need mercy. Mercy exonerates the guilty party. Mercy is unmerited. It is not something that can be earned. The offender deserves judgment but instead, mercy is given. Mercy is a gift born from the character of the giver. Mercy is compassionate or kind forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or another person in one's power; it is the demonstration of compassion, pity, or benevolence. Because mercy is undeserved and unmerited, when extended, it truly is an act of God.

Lamentations 3:22-24 was penned by the Weeping Prophet, Jeremiah, who declares that God’s love preserves us. His unfailing love guards us and keeps us safe in the face of danger and uncertainty. God demonstrates his love toward us through His actions. Mercy is an essential element of our God. Scripture says that our High Priest Jesus is touched by our infirmities. He is moved emotionally by our human experience because Jesus is God incarnate. He lived, breathed, and walked on this Earth as a human. Therefore, He understands what we experience.

Jesus extends empathy and compassion and His mercies toward us never end. The mercy door is always open. When we have fallen into sin, mercy is there. God's Word (The Holy Bible) says we can boldly approach His throne to obtain mercy when we need it.

His mercies are renewed every morning. This means that each day we are forgiven, we get a brand new start. God extends mercy to us and forgives our sins, mistakes, errors, mishaps, and shortcomings. Our God is the God of second chances. He is compassionate and understanding with His children. He deals with us lovingly and compassionately.

Call to Action:

1. Believe that mercy is always near. It’s okay if you fall. Look to God and get up again. You can begin again. There is no sin too great to be forgiven.

2. Embrace God’s mercy daily. It is renewed each day. If you fall into sin today, God’s forgiveness and mercy areavailable. Tomorrow you have a fresh start. Receive it. It’s yours, no questions asked.

3. Know that God is a kind and compassionate Heavenly Father. He knows exactly what you are experiencing and He can help you like nobody else can.

4. Remember, God extends mercy to us daily because of His unfailing love for us. Be merciful to others. We all need mercy and grace.

Let’s Pray:

Heavenly Father, thank You for Your faithful and unfailing love toward me that keeps me safe and protected. Thank you, Lord, that Your mercies do not end. You are always near, ready to extend mercy, ready to give me forgiveness when I don’t deserve it. I thank You that Your mercies are renewed every morning. You understand I am flawed and imperfect, yet You love me unconditionally. You understand that I am prone to make mistakes, so You make provision for me with renewed mercies. Help me to be merciful to others, as You are merciful to me. Thank You, Father, for hearing and answering my prayers. In the Name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.

Song of Reflection: “Great is Your Mercy” by Donnie McClurkin. Listen to it here.

Author Bio:

Essie Taylor is an author, educator, minister, youth advocate, recording artist, podcaster, and improviser. She earned a Bachelor of Arts from Northwestern University and a Master of Arts in Teaching from Rockford College.

She is a veteran educator of Bilingual Education, English as a Second Language, and Spanish Language Acquisition with National Board Teacher Certification. She is an advocate of lifelong learning, language learning, and multiculturalism.

Essie is the CEO of KenMar Press, an author agency, and The Essie Faye Collection. Essie is the author of Finding the Love You Deserve: 30 Lessons in Self-Love & Acceptance, and Finding The Love Your Deserve: A 60-Day Healing Journal For Women of Faith.

She is deeply committed to motivating minorities, women, and youth to pursue God while chasing their dreams and carving out their life’s path. She loves God, people, and helping others.

Essie has been a Christian for nearly all of her 39 years. She was born again at 15 years old. She has been a bilingual worship leader and interpreter for 10+ years. By the grace of God, Essie helped to establish bilingual ministries at five churches in her young life. She is a survivor of domestic violence (verbal and emotional abuse) and marital abandonment in a prior marriage.

Essie is a Chicago native. She lives in Chicago with her husband Donald Taylor II.

Connect with Essie:

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