MERCY TRIUMPHS OVER JUDGMENT
LIFE Devotions–May 23, 2016
“Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, 13 because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.”
–James 2:12-13 [NIV]
Do you find yourself making judgments in your head about people based on their image, income, or behavior? We judge because we have no mercy. And we have no mercy because we have not been perfected in the love of God. God wants us to see others the way He sees them, but we can’t have our eyes opened when our hearts are closed to His grace for our own lives. Could it be that you don’t like people because you just don’t like yourself? You have messed up pretty bad. Others have labeled and rejected you along the way and you’ve locked yourself up in a prison of self-disgust. You get jealous when someone seems better than you or critical when you feel better than someone. But mercy triumphs over judgment. Mercy liberates the mind from meanness and the heart from hardness. It is God’s Mercy that cancels the noise of inward miserly thoughts that sabotage our own potential and the potential of others. God saw a Godly statesman in Joseph when his brothers saw a spoiled and selfish teen. God saw a king in David when his brothers saw an insolent inexperienced shepherd. Were these older brothers describing their youngest sibling or were they really describing themselves? Maybe it was not the speck in Joseph and David's eye they were seeing, but the plank in their own. They could not see beyond their own condition so they ruined everybody else's. Thankfully God has no plank in His own eye. He is perfect in all His ways. He therefore sees us through clean eyes of mercy, mercy that is stronger than judgment. Where others see failure, God sees favor. Where others see demise, God sees destiny. He is rich in mercy and filled with unfailing love.
– Take some time to receive God’s mercy in areas where you have condemned yourself. Draw close to God and let mercy invade you. God’s mercy triumphs over personal judgment that cripples His purpose for your life.
– Once you begin to see yourself the way God sees you, ask God to give you eyes of mercy to see others the way He sees them. This is the only way we can be agents of salvation and redemption to a lost world. God is love and has no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but is pleased when they turn from their sinful ways and live (Ezekiel 18:23). God wants all to be saved and to come to the knowledge of His saving truth (1 Tim. 2:4-6).