'...you love to be merciful.' Micah 7:18 TLB
This sign was outside a convent: Absolutely No Trespassing! Violators Will Be Prosecuted to the Fullest Extent of the Law. Signed - The Sisters of Mercy! Doesn't sound quite right, does it? Thankfully Jesus proved on the cross that '...Mercy triumphs over judgment' (James 2:13 NIV).
In the book Hosea, the prophet Hosea married a woman called Gomer. After having three children with him, shady Gomer deserted the family to live with another man. Later she worked as a prostitute and that was when God said to Hosea '...Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is...an adulteress' (Hosea 3:1 NIV). Even though Gomer was unfaithful to her husband, Hosea showed her mercy and love, and welcomed her back as his wife!
Loving people who have wronged us is very difficult to do. It goes against our natural instinct to fight back and defend ourselves. Remember the Bible doesn't say 'Do for others as they have done for you'; it says 'Do to others as you would like them to do to you' (Luke 6:31 NLT) - there's a big difference!
So what now? If today you're struggling with unforgiveness, think about all God has forgiven you on the cross. You have been shown love and mercy far beyond anything you can imagine or understand. No matter what you've ever said or done to hurt God or people, he's totally forgiven it! We have all been unfaithful in many ways. God has chosen to show you his love again and again. Like Gomer, you have got what you... don't... deserve.
Soulfood: Rev 19-22, Luke 14:25-35, Ps 106:24-48, Prov 7:3-5