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I’m in the middle of writing an article on loneliness as a means to drive us deeper into God’s heart and was just struck by the passage this nugget came from. The context is distress and anguish, feeling the grip of death’s crushing pull. Maybe you can relate. But the author of this psalm lifts his eyes above his circumstances and prays for deliverance. He meditates on the character of God; how He is gracious, righteous, and merciful. He remembers what God has done; how He preserves the simple and rescued him when he was flat on his back, hopeless and alone. Then comes verse seven. Circumstances haven’t changed for the author but, then again, God’s worthiness to be worshipped has never been contingent on ideal circumstances. No matter what our lives might look like right now, no matter how uncomfortable or excruciating our circumstances might be, if we have been redeemed by Jesus, we have every reason to “return to our rest;” for the the Lord INDEED has dealt bountifully with us. And He is worthy of our praise and confidence right here. •••• [Also, 1) this is not a staged photo and 2) you should go read all of Psalm 116 for yourself.]
Happy birthday to the best big sister! 🥳 You are as genuine and intentional as they get; you love deep and feel big, and I’m so thankful for your heart and life. 💜 Additionally, I’d like to know how much you were paid to hug me in this photo.
“Do not despair, dear heart, but come to the Lord with all your jagged wounds, black bruises, and running sores. He alone can heal, and He delights to do it. It is our Lord’s office to bind up the brokenhearted, and He is gloriously at home at it.” -Charles Spurgeon
“Theologians who limit the means of grace to overtly redemptive religious practices miss something about the God who speaks without words in the theater of His creation.” -David Powlison

Follow me as I follow Jesus

Monday Morning Munch No. 43 – éleos

éleos is Greek for “mercy” as it is defined by loyalty to God’s covenant; pity; compassion.

God’s éleos is stunning. While reading Nehemiah this week I was again reminded of my need for a Savior and the lengths He goes to prove His love and mercy to us.

In Nehemiah 9 the people confessed their sin and worshipped the Lord for He alone is God.

In verse 6 the people begin praising and praying, rehearsing all the wonderful things the Lord did from Abram to the present, beautifully recounting the mercy of the Lord.

Then in verse 16 their prayer takes a turn.

“But they and our fathers acted presumptuously and stiffened their neck and did not obey Your commandments. They refused to obey and were not mindful of the wonders that You performed among them,”

Pause.

Lord, let us be always mindful of Your wonders.
Never let us stray from the enthralling works of Your hands. 

Resume.

“but they stiffened their neck and appointed a leader to return to their slavery in Egypt.” -Nehemiah 9:16

Whoa. They wanted to return to slavery, to their chains. To the exhausting labor and endless yelling by evil taskmasters.

How often do I, do we,  go back to our chains? Seeking comfort in the lies and endless labors of Satan and our old life?

May God’s wonders captivate and capture our hearts so much that the old life would lose all appeal and our allegiance would remain with the One who broke our chains, not the one who bound us in them.

“But You are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and did not forsake them.” -Nehemiah 9:17

The mercy of God never ceases (enough said) to blow me away at its drenching, overwhelming enormity. And it doesn’t stop at verse 17. The chapter goes on to recount how God responded in unfathomable mercy to the Israelites even after their sins, disobedience, defiance and rebellion.

Our God is beautiful and rich in éleos. How can we not serve and wholly follow this great King, the real Aslan, who loves us so much He takes pity on us, extending compassion and steadfast love to us even after we rebel?

I hope you experience an outpouring of the love and mercy of God today as you seek to serve Him in all you do.

mercy remains

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