Part Two : The Merciful Ones

More than a Testimony: The Merciful Ones

There is such great power and humility in extending grace and mercy to others, especially in moments when we feel we are at our lowest. I needed so much grace and mercy from God and also from the people I knew and loved. Here’s the interesting thing about grace and mercy: we expect it from God, the all-knowing, the Creator of all things, the all-powerful GOD, the one who holds our lives in His hands; but, we don’t expect it from mere humans, little humans, who have no power except for the power that’s loaned to us by God. Humans — -who bleed, who are imperfect; and yet, at times, inflate themselves to a peak where others have to beg them for grace and mercy — -and this attitude is contrary to Scripture. Scripture states: “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy” (Matthew 5:7). Another duly noted verse: “But where sin increased, grace increased all the more” (Romans 5:20b). Why is it that we mere humans find it difficult to give mercy to others? Are we so puffed up with our selves that we could look down on other people?

Notice that I often use the pronoun of “we.” That is because I don’t exclude myself from the puffed-up attitude of thinking that I am better than someone else. The truth is, there have been plenty of moments in my life when I thought my way of living was better than someone else’s. However, a lot of us Christians (including myself) are in dire need of biblical correction and if we love God, and want to keep His commands, we should want…we should crave this correction.

My parents exemplified the Matthew 5:7 scripture when I told them the news about my pregnancy. They met me with unmerited favor and so much mercy; I am yet full to this day because of their firm obedience to the word of God. Instead of making me feel like a failure, they encouraged me to seek repentance and to begin to enjoy the pregnancy, because, in truth, nothing is embarrassing about being responsible for another life. It is perhaps one of the most precious honorary rewards I will ever experience.

I remember so clearly. I called my mother the next morning after I took several tests the night before to confirm. I held the phone to my ear with my head in my hand. I hyperventilated. I couldn’t bring myself to make words. I choked as I gasped for air trying to tell my mother the news. I fought back sobs but it didn’t work. I wailed like a toddler. Two minutes of this chaos didn’t pass by before she guessed what was wrong. And after her unfailing intuition, the only words I could say was that I was sorry and please don’t make me do this. I kept repeating those phrases over and over again until she gently interrupted with: “It’s gonna be alright, baby. I’m not mad at you.”

Soon after, I would talk with my father. Most of you know I am a daddy’s girl and even at twenty-nine years old, his approval is still highly valuable to me. And even still, I seek to make him proud of me.

“Don’t worry about anything,” he said. “We’re your support system, and we’re here for you.”

“But I just want you to be proud of me, Daddy,” I said between sobs.

“Baby, I am more than proud,” he said. “You have done extremely well. Now, make sure you don’t stress yourself out and be sure to get proper medical care.”

Relief. That’s what I felt. Love. Kindness. Empathy. Compassion. Forgiveness. GRACE AND MERCY. I felt the characteristics of God exuding from my mom and dad, and at that moment, I could only think about the goodness of our Lord, the mercifulness of our Lord, and how He maps the trajectory of our lives so that His name alone receives the glory. Though I’d still struggle with the news of my pregnancy long after telling my parents, I knew God had a task for me, an almost instant revelation from Him, that my testimony needed to be told to women who would be in desperate need of encouragement and biblical understanding, and who too, need merciful ones.

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