A Prayer of Mercy
“compassion, easing of distress”
A prayer of Moses the man of God.
13 Relent, Lord! How long will it be?
Have compassion on your servants.
14 Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.
“Mean girls go far in high school. Kind women go far in LIFE.”
– Mandy Hale, best-selling author
When we ask for exception from a penalty we deserve, what we are asking for is mercy. When we ask for exception from a penalty we don’t deserve, what we are asking for is justice. Can you think of a time when you asked to be forgiven a penalty that you actually deserved?
If you skip out on paying a traffic ticket, and fines and penalties eventually accrue, you can be arrested and have to go before a judge to plead your case. When people in a courtroom ask in a way that appears they think they deserve to be forgiven, they often have to pay in full immediately. But when people are honest, share what money they actually have and plead for mercy, they are more likely to receive it, leaving the courthouse with the matter paid in full.
Are you experiencing any consequences in your life that can be tied directly to decisions you have made? Maybe instead of asking for justice, or even help, try asking for mercy. As one of Jesus’ own family members once said, “Mercy triumphs over judgment” (James 2:13).
Think of some unpleasant circumstances that your choices have played a role in bringing to you. Talk to God about those choices and your understanding of them right now.
What would it cost someone else to extend you mercy in these circumstances? Talk to God about this part of the equation also.
Ask God for mercy now, even if it is something that cannot be directly tied to an action of your own, but has happened just because you are a member of a guilty race called humanity.