Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honours God
- Proverbs 14:31
I am known within my circle of friends for having a lot of feelings. I get emotional when others are going through tough times, and would describe myself as a very empathetic person. I used to view this trait as a downfall. I hated that I was so sensitive and that I cared too much. But lately, God has been showing me that this is actually a gift and something that I can use to glorify Him.
If you have the spiritual gift of mercy, you may find that you often have a desire to show compassion to others. One passage that highlights this is Luke 10:33-34 which says “But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him.”
This passage shows us the importance of looking out for each other, and showing kindness and mercy to those who we might not normally befriend. Another great verse that highlights this is Isaiah 1:17 which says “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the case of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.” God doesn’t just call us to serve people we like or relate to, we are called to love everyone.
There are so many ways that God can use us to show mercy to others. One simple thing I like to do is to listen and pray for my friends and family. I find that sometimes we get caught up in our own problems that we forget to just sit and hear what others are going through, but I think it is so important to make sure they feel loved, heard, and supported.
I would also encourage you to look for ways to serve the marginalized and show them God’s love. There are so many ways to do this; volunteering in your community, being a friend to someone who feels like an outcast or advocating for people who don’t have the same privileges as you are just some examples. Sometimes being empathetic and merciful can be tiring. As you lean into this gift God has given you, take time to ask Him to fill you up. He will give us what we need, and can do great things through us.
1. What is one thing you can do this week to help someone else?
2. Who is God calling you to pray for?
3. What are some issues or causes you feel strongly about? How can you advocate for people in those situations?
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for giving me the gift of mercy. Please help me to use this gift in a way that honours You. Help me to reach out to the marginalized, and to see the good in others. Give me opportunities to serve others with an open heart, and to show them Your love. God, I ask for a filling of Your spirit when I feel weary. Fill me up so that I can pour out to others. Thank You for all You have done for me, Amen.
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Want to know more about the Spiritual Gift of Mercy? Check out this RESOURCE from Shepherds of the Lost.