“Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.”
– James 2:12,13
I believe it was Rick Warren who once said, “Hurting people hurt people.” As a pastor who has seen a lot of pain, I don’t know of any truer statement than this. So today, I want to invite you to consider what would happen if you purposefully adopted this view of the ones who wrong you? Do you have any idea how life changing it might be if someone blatantly offended you and you purposely show them the Kingdom of God instead?
What if someone cuts in front of you in line at the store or at Disneyland? While your natural inclination might be to read them the riot act, do you think it would hold their attention if you engaged them in conversation and showed a genuine interest in them instead? I dare say that it would! Or what if you went out to eat and the server was just awful — brought your food out cold, never refilled your drink and took forever to bring your bill? While it would be normal in that case to leave a small tip, what would happen if you left the biggest tip you ever have? What if you tipped 40 percent or even 100 percent?! Perhaps an overwhelming and undeserved act of kindness would change that person’s life and their work ethic — you just never know!
Friend, I encourage you today to be radically merciful to those who wrong you. Rather than being a watchdog for justice, leave that up to Jesus, and choose instead to be a conduit of His overwhelming and redemptive love. When someone insults you, say something kind about them. When someone steals from you, give them something else. As you make deliberate choices to bless the ones who harm you, the effect is powerful and life-changing! It’s not about you. It’s not about proving yourself, feeding your ego, or being right. It’s about inviting people into the Kingdom of God. When you do this, you introduce them to Jesus, the only One who can ease their pain and heal their heart! Isn’t that an awesome thought?
Jesus, thank you for giving me opportunities to show radical mercy to those who wrong me. I want others to see you in me.
Think of the last time you were wronged or offended. Did you show radical mercy? What did, or might it look like?
If you’re unable to attend your local church or need some additional weekly inspiration, be sure to tune into Hour of Power every Saturday night at 6:30 p.m. PT on TBN or watch online at hourofpower.org/episode.