I can remember as a child wishing for unlimited candy, unlimited toys, and even unlimited sunlight. All three are too much, even the unlimited sunlight. The reason I wanted the latter is because I would want to stay outside to play as much as possible. Generally, as long as their was sunlight, that was okay. Of course, we all need downtime. So even that third one isn’t such a good thing. Is there anything, in unlimited portion, that is?
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, – Ephesians 2:4, ESV
That word “rich” isn’t enough. When I think of rich, I might think of icing on a cake. However, that’s not unlimited. The word we translate rich has the meaning of without measure or unlimited and we should probably read that verse as, “But God, being unlimited in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us.” It’s a subtle but powerful difference.
Our mercy is often limited. We reach the limit of what we’ll tolerate and then there is no more forgiveness, no more understanding, and no more mercy. For some folks and some situations, that limit is quicker reached that others. However, God is not like us. Paul tells us that God is unlimited in His mercy. That mercy comes from the root of His love for us. In other words, he has unabounded mercy towards us because of His great love for us. Think about that for a moment. It should bless you to consider that is how God feels about you.
The fact of the matter is that due to our sin, we need unlimited, unabounded mercy. So, yes, there is something in unlimited portion that is good for us: God’s mercy. Anything less isn’t enough. Consider that when we were in sin we were His enemies. We were an abomination in His sight. We had wronged Him far worse than anyone has ever wronged us. Yet, because of His great love He extended unlimited mercy towards us. As a result, He could act on our behalf though we were His enemies. He could overcome our sinfulness and provide a way for which we could be redeemed and be blameless in His sight. All of this required unlimited mercy. That’s what God delivered.
As you begin this week, meditate on the fact that our Lord is unlimited in mercy towards you. Does that change your perspective? I hope it does. I hope it encourages you to not only accept God’s mercy and overcome some obstacles, but also to extend your own mercy. Act with mercy towards who may anger you, who may insult you, who may hurt you. Grant mercy to those who have done such things in the past. Let us attempt to be as rich in mercy towards others as God is towards us!