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Mercy is a lifestyle
Habits build a lifestyle. The choices you make in your life today contribute to the kind of life you want to live, whether you realize it or not.
The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. (Lamentations 3:22-23)
How would you define a lifestyle? There are probably lots of ways, but when I think about what it means to have a particular lifestyle, it usually involves how that person is able to make choices.
If you have a luxurious lifestyle, you can always choose the best option from what is available regardless of its cost. If you have a scarcity-minded lifestyle, you are constantly in survival mode and live on the barest scraps you can dig up. Those are economic or financial examples. But what about emotional lifestyles? What about spiritual lifestyles?
If your life is full of anxiety and insecurity, that usually means you’ve built habits that make you feel as though you’re in control of your life. You’ve put your trust in your own ability to keep yourself safe and provided for.
You see, habits build a lifestyle. The choices you make in your life today contribute to the kind of life you want to live, whether you realize it or not.
Are you choosing to ignore an obvious problem because it’s too much trouble to confront it? Are you choosing to pretend things are okay when they aren’t? Are you choosing to give in to your anger and lash out at those around you because you feel hurt or abandoned?
All of those choices are going to shape the kind of lifestyle you live. So what would a merciful lifestyle look like? What would happen if today you chose to be like Jesus and extend mercy to someone who hurt you yesterday?
After all, God gives us new mercy every morning. He lets us start again when the sun rises. So why can’t we offer that same mercy to someone else?
It’s not easy, but Jesus never said it would be.
Questions for Reflection
In your mind, what would a merciful lifestyle look like?
How have other people shown mercy to you?
What are some merciful habits you could develop in your life today?
Weekly Memory Verse