The Golden Nugget: “Never pray for justice, because you might get some.” —Margaret Atwood
Daily Verse: “This is what the Lord Almighty said: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another.’” —Zechariah 7:9
The difference between justice and mercy is sense: Justice makes sense. Mercy doesn’t. Justice is quid pro quo—this for that. You prepare to run the best race, you execute, you cross the finish line first, and justice says you get the blue ribbon. You violate a rule of society and you pay a penalty of service, time, shame, or all three. You encounter justice in some fashion every day and, hopefully, you are on the receiving end more often than not.
But then there’s mercy. We often fail to apply God’s desires to the problems in our community—both personal and social. The result is injustice rather than justice. Justice requires that you be punished for every wrong. But mercy is not limited by justice; it is kind and forgiving. Mercy doesn’t make sense because reason and emotion are turned upside down by it. Mercy is asked by God because it is better for your life. Can we be as impartial as God? Can we truly practice mercy’s companion—forgiveness?
I invite you to practice the nonsensical act of mercy over and over. It’s better for you than justice.
- Why can’t you “deserve” mercy?
- Why is practicing mercy not a guarantee that injustice will not occur again?
Visit a nursing home and chat with the residents for one hour.