Mercy 18: Merciful Gratitude
‘Now on His way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As He was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met Him. They stood at a distance and cried out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” When He saw them He said: “Go show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed…’ (LK 17: 11-14)
Nothing makes us merciful like receiving mercy. We ask for it and He gives it. Gratitude for the gift breaks the yoke of all other cares. Remember mercy. Let it flow generously from you as an expression of thanksgiving.
Those of us familiar with the shame of sexual sin and brokenness may be experts in such recall. Soiled by sin, aware of the disorder within us, we cry out for mercy from our depths. Like rain from heaven, God pours living water on the leprous ground of our hearts. He washes us clean and promises to make us fruitful.
Like the lepers in Luke 17, Jesus transforms our cry from ‘Unclean!’ to ‘Have Mercy!’ Lepers had to announce themselves as ‘unclean’ in order to warn others of their presence. Many of us have wrestled with the same self-pronouncement: ‘If you only knew…’ Mercy transforms the cry of self-hatred to a welcome of healing. Jesus always responds to the cry for mercy.
In this Gospel account, Jesus restored all the lepers who cried out for mercy. But only one came back to thank Him. Maybe the others feared guilt by association; walking too closely with Him could cost them. Maybe they wanted to move on from the horrors of leprosy, to not look back. They lose. How blessed are we who make His saving work our praise. ‘Sin destroyed me, wanted blood; He poured out His blood and made me new!’
A wise man said: ‘Gratitude gives God consent.’ Our praise for His mercy gives Him room to be our God of mercy, over and over, for us and through us to our fellow lepers. With each praise, we grow in the assurance that His mercy has sufficed, is enough now, and will suffice all our days.
‘One of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked Him—and he was a Samaritan. Jesus asked: “Were not all the ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” Then He said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.” (LK 17: 15-19)
Desert Stream/Living Waters: South: Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Dean Greer, Regional Coordinator. Please pray for the new LW group and team in New Orleans.
Restored Hope Network: Books Unbanned: redemptive books about healing and leaving homosexuality are not allowed in public and school libraries, although pro-homosexual books are welcomed. Please pray this ban will be removed so that those who are hurting can read the truth of God’s plan for them.
Courage: Please pray for protection and breakthrough for those with SSA who are in despair and tormented with suicidal thoughts.
Ministries of Pastoral Care: We pray for God to continually grant us the grace to confess our sins to Him and one another.