A Word for Today

Lamentations 3:22-23

Each day, we need to seek out God’s great mercy and allow His compassion to guide us. by Lt. Colonel Jackie Bowers

As I look at this Scripture, I am overwhelmed at the great love the Lord has for each one of us, as His children. When Jeremiah wrote this passage back in the Old Testament days, the events in his life and those of his country were not going very well. The country of Israel was imprisoned by a foreign power because they failed to love God supremely and stop living in idolatry. Now, they were in a difficult and depressing circumstance – living in captivity.

But, Jeremiah writes even amid those difficult times, that God shared His great love for the Israelites, and even for us today. He writes that God’s acts of “mercy” are not exhausted! The word mercy (hesed) is described as a steadfast, loyal, faithful, committed and dependable love. The true character of God’s love is that it never stops. It never ceases. God always loves! Mercy is the marvelous forgiveness shown to someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm. It is God’s never-ending mercy that allows us to come into His presence day, after day, after day…and receive His blessed forgiveness for our sinfulness! We are blessed to be the beneficiary of God’s great mercy!

God’s compassion never fails, and it is renewed each morning. God knows we are frail human beings and that we need His loving compassion every day in our lives. It is the devil’s goal to seek and destroy us. In the book of Peter, the apostle writes that the devil roams looking for those that he can devour. The only way the devil can get us to sin is to let him into our lives. We need God’s compassion to guide us each day so we can resist the devil schemes. In James 1:19, it says:

“Understand this, my dear brothers and sister; you must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.” But if you, “Submit yourself, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”

James 4:7

Each day, we need to seek out God’s great mercy and allow His compassion to guide us. In 2 Corinthians, 4:8-9 it says:

“We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair, persecuted, but not abandoned, struck down, but not destroyed.”

Even when God allows troubles to come, it may knock us down, but it doesn’t knock us out. How can you appreciate the sun when you have not experienced the dark clouds in your life? With every spiritual battle come scars, but then there is healing, and God’s great joy that comes with His victory and power to us! Great is God’s faithfulness!

Prayer

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace, where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where is darkness, light; and where there is sadness, joy!

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood, as to understand; to be loved, as to love; for it is in giving that we receive; and it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal life. Amen.

Prayer of Saint Francis

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