MERCY AND CONTEMPLATION

This seems to me to be an odd topic for my Lectio Divina (Philippians 2:5), but here it is.

In thinking about having in me the mind of Christ Jesus, my mind wandered into the aspect of Mercy, so important to the mission of Christ, yet so confusing to His followers.

We say it every time me pray the Eucharist together. Lord Have Mercy, Christ Have Mercy, Lord Have Mercy. What is this mercy that seems like unconditional love but carries a much deeper meaning, if we but take the time and effort to grow deeper in its implications? Use the following snippets from the Scriptres to reflect on God’s mercy and how we should show that same mercy to others, if we ourselves want mercy.

Psalm 23:6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord my whole life long.

Psalm 25:6 Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love, for they have been from of old.I

Psalm 40:11 Do not, O Lord, withhold your mercy from me; let your steadfast love and your faithfulness keep me safe forever.

Psalm 51:1 Cleansing and Pardon ] [ To the leader. A Psalm of David, when the prophet Nathan came to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba. ] Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions,

Psalm 69:16 Answer me, O Lord, for your steadfast love is good; according to your abundant mercy, turn to me.

Psalm 79:1[ Psalm 79 ] [ Plea for Mercy for Jerusalem ] [ A Psalm of Asaph. ] O God, the nations have come into your inheritance; they have defiled your holy temple; they have laid Jerusalem in ruins.

Psalm 103:4 …who redeems your life from the Pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,

Psalm 119:77 Let your mercy come to me, that I may live; for your law is my delight.]

Psalm 119:156 Great is your mercy, O Lord; give me life according to your justice.

Psalm 123:2 As the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, until he has mercy upon us.

Proverbs 28:13 No one who conceals transgressions will prosper, but one who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.

Sirach 50:22[ A Benediction ] And now bless the God of all, who everywhere works great wonders, who fosters our growth from birth, and deals with us according to his mercy.

Sirach 50:24 May he entrust to us his mercy, and may he deliver us in our days!

Lamentations 5:1[ A Plea for Mercy ] Remember, O Lord, what has befallen us; look, and see our disgrace!

Baruch 2:19 For it is not because of any righteous deeds of our ancestors or our kings that we bring before you our prayer for mercy, O Lord our God.

Matthew 9:13Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.”I

Matthew 9:27[ Jesus Heals Two Blind Men ] As Jesus went on from there, two blind men followed him, crying loudly, “Have mercy on us, Son of David!”

Matthew 12:7But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless.

Matthew 15:22 Just then a Canaanite woman from that region came out and started shouting, “Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David; my daughter is tormented by a demon.”

Matthew 23:23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. It is these you ought to have practiced without neglecting the others.

Mark 5:19 But Jesus refused, and said to him, “Go home to your friends, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and what mercy he has shown you.”Luke 1:58Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her.

Luke 16:24 He called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.’

Ephesians 2:4 But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us

Philippians 2:27 He was indeed so ill that he nearly died. But God had mercy on him, and not only on him but on me also, so that I would not have one sorrow after another.

1 Timothy 1:2 To Timothy, my loyal child in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

1 Timothy 1:12 I am grateful to Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because he judged me faithful and appointed me to his service,

1 Timothy 1:13 …even though I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and a man of violence. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief,

2 Timothy 1:2 To Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

2 Timothy 1:16 May the Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, because he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chain;I

2 Timothy 1:18—may the Lord grant that he will find mercy from the Lord on that day! And you know very well how much service he rendered in Ephesus.I

James 2:13 For judgment will be without mercy to anyone who has shown no mercy; mercy triumphs over judgment.

James 3:17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy.

1 Peter 1:3[ A Living Hope ] Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

Now you have read what I have read. My questions were:

  • We are bid to have mercy on others as Christ has mercy on us. Does mercy mean that, for those who do not hold our traditions or heritage, we should compromise and give up what Christ handed on to us, just in order for us to have mercy on others?
  • Does mercy mean we don’t judge others while still maintaining our integrity and, removing the beam in our own eye before we pass judgement on others? Matthew 7:1-5
  • Does mercy mean we love the sinner but do not condone the sin?
  • Does mercy mean we must first keep love in our hearts before condemning other who do not believe in our way?
  • Does mercy mean I try to convert each day from my false self to my true self?
  • Does mercy mean I place myself in the presence of the Sacred at the Eucharist, Liturgy of the Hours, the Rosary, without worrying whether other people are failing in their spiritual awareness?
  • Don’t play God games (my god is better than your god, my church is better than yours, I judge who goes to Heaven and Hell, Scriptures says you must be baptized with water and the Spirit to get to Heaven — a subtle form of idolatry in which the assumption is there is something God can’t do).

What you do think mercy is, in terms of your contemplative approach to living out each day?

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