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God's love

Mercy Matters

Friends

I would like to ask you a question, do you understand God?  One of the purposes of the I‘ll Take Mercy series is to help you better understand what God is really like.  Most people have misconceptions of God.  They don’t understand fully, the deep and unending mercy of God.

Just stop and listen to me for a moment, every good thing in your life is because of the mercy of God.  You would not be alive if it weren’t for the mercy of God.  The talents, the gifts, the abilities you have are gifts of the mercy of God.  The fact that all of the good things, the relationships that happen in your life, the fact that you’re going to go to Heaven one day, is only due to the mercy of God.  Without that we would have nothing.

 The Bible says in Titus 3:5 NLT says this “(Jesus) he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.  He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit.”

God is such a God of mercy He came to earth in human form, just to prove the point! He came on a mission of mercy and that mission was to save us. In fact, Jesus says it like this in Luke 19:10 GNT Jesus:The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

This is the ultimate expression of mercy.  Jesus said the whole reason He came to earth, why we have Christmas, why we have Easter, why we have everything that exists, is because of Luke 19:10.  The ultimate expression of mercy.  Mercy seeks, mercy takes the initiative, mercy makes the first step.  Mercy saves!

 And by the way, this is the reason Carolinas Cornerstone Church exists.  The whole reason we have church is because of this verse.  We exist to seek and to save those who are lost.

No matter who you are and no matter what you have done, God loves you, and He wants you to come home to Him.  He wants to shower His grace on you.  He wants to throw a party for you when you return.

The Bible says in Romans 4:16 ICB, The promise is not only for those people that live under the law of Moses. It is for anyone who lives with faith like Abraham.”

Who are the people who “live under the law of Moses”?  The Jewish people, the nation of Israel, lived under the Law of Moses in the Old Testament.  This verse is saying that God’s grace is available not just to Jews who live under the Law of Moses.  It is available to everybody with faith.

That’s good news! God’s grace is not just for Jewish people.  It’s for all of us.  All of us can come to God in the same way: through faith in the grace of God through His Son, Jesus Christ.

Does “everybody” include short people?  Yes.  Does it mean rich people and poor people?  Yes.  Does it include politicians and blue-collar workers?  Yes.  Does it include people from every ethnic background?  Yes.  Does that mean people from every country in the world?  Yes!

It means everybody.  Everybody! God’s grace is available to you.  You cannot understand what it means to have a relationship with God without understanding grace. Without grace, you don’t have any relationship with God.  Grace is the heart of Christianity, the heart of following Christ, and the heart of being a believer.  Please remember: No matter what you have done and no matter who you are, God’s grace is available to you.

So, after you give your life to Jesus, everything should be rosy, right? Yeah, sorry, but life does not work out like that. Remember that broken thing we call a world? Things are not going to always go the way we plan, and that’s not God’s fault.  But remember in times when you face challenges, or when your world seems to be falling apart, you still have plenty of reasons to be grateful as a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ.

No one escapes trials in life.  When pursuing your God-given dreams, you are on a collision course with challenges and disappointments.  But these don’t have to derail your destiny!

God is able to keep you from stumbling in your spiritual life!  No matter how far you have drifted away from God, no matter what has become a sinful habit in your life, no matter how dim your hope has become that anything can change, no matter how many times you have tried to change and failed, God is able to pick you up and get you going again.

Here are a few things you and I need to remember when going through hard times:

#1 remember God is in control.  So, don’t demand to understand all the challenges in life.  Just trust in God’s plan.

#2, remain faithful no matter what the cost.  Don’t give up and quit on your dream no matter what you face.  Ask God to give you the strength to stay faithful to what He’s called you to do.

#3, reject bitterness.  Refuse to allow disappointment to cause a root of bitterness to spring forth in your life.  There is nothing Satan would like more than to let un-forgiveness distract you from God’s plan for your life.

#4, rest in the providence of God.  Be assured that His invisible hand is working in you and in your life.  Don’t try to push or manipulate God’s will for your life.

Wait for God’s timing, and in due season, you will get a better picture of why God allowed you to go through your trials and failures.

Remember what God has brought you through and get excited about where He is taking you.  When you do, you will be able to live with an attitude of gratitude no matter what your circumstances are!

Make Every Day Count!

Barry

Don’t stay home Sunday, come and help us lead people to Jesus Christ!

I'll Take Mercy

Friends

Has someone ever shown mercy to you?  You may be thinking about a good deed someone has done for you, but that's not what I am talking about.  Mercy means “Undeserved forgiveness and unearned kindness”.  I want to invite you to a 7-week message series on Mercy.

I have discovered that most people don’t understand how merciful God really is.  It explains to me why they are afraid of God.  That’s why they avoid God.  That’s why God is distant to them.  They don’t understand the mercy God constantly offers us.

When you understand the mercy of God your anxiety will decrease and your peace of mind will increase. Your stress will go down and your stability will go up.  Your frustration in life will be diminished and your satisfaction in life will be increased.

You must understand that mercy is really – “undeserved forgiveness and unearned kindness.”  And that’s the way God treats you!  Undeserved forgiveness, when somebody forgives you and you don’t deserve it, that’s mercy.  And when somebody shows you a kindness that you have not earned, that’s called mercy.  The Bible says that God wants to show you mercy, and when we show that to others, we are modeling God.

You are going to need mercy every single second of your life.  The air you breathe is from the mercy of God.  The water you drink is from the mercy of God. Everything you have to live life, is because God is a merciful God.  In fact, you would not be alive now, or even have been born at all, if it wasn’t for the mercy of God.  Everything in your life is a gift of the mercy of God.

Mercy is like a diamond; it is multi-faceted.  Think about Mercy this way because I guarantee if you will learn how to be an agent of mercy, it will transform your relationships:

•Mercy means being patient with people’s quirks.

How do you get more patience for your kids, spouse, or friends?  The Bible says in James 3:17 NLT “The wisdom from above is first pure.  It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy.”   The wiser you become, the more patient and merciful you become.

•Mercy means helping anyone around you who is hurting.

You cannot love your neighbor as yourself without being merciful.  Proverbs 3:27 TEV says, “Whenever you possibly can, do good to those who need it.”  But God is not simply watching what you do.  He is watching your attitude: Romans 12:8 NIV, “[When you] show mercy, do it cheerfully.”

•Mercy means giving people a second chance.

When somebody hurts us, we normally want to get even or write that person off.  But Ephesians 4:31-32 CEV says, “Stop being bitter and angry and mad at others. Don’t yell at one another or curse each other or ever be rude. Instead, be kind and merciful, and forgive others, just as God forgave you because of Christ.”

•Mercy means doing good to those who hurt you.

Mercy is giving people what they need, not what they deserve.  Why should we do it? Because that is what God does with you in Luke 6 :35-36 NIV “Love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because [God] is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”

•Mercy means being kind to those who offend you.

You’ve got to be more interested in winning people to Christ than in winning the argument. Jude 1:22-23 GWT says, Show mercy to those who have doubts.  Save others by snatching them from the fire of hell.  Show mercy to others, even though you are afraid that you might be stained by their sinful lives.”

•Mercy means building bridges of love to the unpopular.

This is what I call premeditated mercy, because you intentionally build friendships with people who don’t have friends or who are not accepted at work or in society.  When the Pharisees questioned why Jesus ate with tax collectors and other unpopular people, “Jesus said, ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.  For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners’” (Matthew 9:13 NLT).

•Mercy means valuing relationships over rules.

Romans 13:10 NIV says, “Love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.”  If you want to show mercy, put people before policies.  Put their needs before procedures.  Put relationships before regulations.  Choose love over law!

If you ever doubt the mercy of God, just look at the cross.  The bond between God the Father and God the Son is closer than any human bond could ever be.  Think of your relationship with your spouse, parents, or children and multiply the strength of that bond exponentially.  That’s just an idea of the kind of love the Father has for the Son.  Yet despite that bond, the Father showed us mercy by sending His only Son to die.

God loves you with a loyal love that’s full of mercy.  He is not just some cosmic grumpy old man who sits up there in the sky waiting for you to mess up so He can judge you. No, He is a loving father who earnestly desires for you to know and love Him.

But He also gives you and me the responsibility of telling others about Him.  And the best way to tell others about His mercy is to demonstrate it every day.  So, let the world see the love of Jesus Christ both in you and through you.  When you live like that around others, they will see a window to the character of God.

Make Every Day Count!

Barry

Please Come Sunday and learn how why you need Mercy