The first comment Amy Sullivan ever made to me was, "Oh, I think we will like each other." That was pretty hard to resist, so I did not even try. I clicked on over to her blog to see what this woman was about. She is creative, feisty, and seeking God's will for her life. I could not ask for more in a bloggy friend.
Amy's blog is focused on her family's mission to become more "other centered" and less "self centered". Amy is always letting us know about good causes and great projects to participate in. Since I am always wrestling (at least inwardly) with how to show mercy, I wondered if the Sullivan family's experience in serving others had changed their thoughts on mercy at all. I asked Amy to write about it and she graciously obliged. Please show her the same warmth and love that you always share with me.
The beautiful Sullivan Family
The idea of mercy eluded me for years. In my eyes, both giving and receiving mercy were signs of weakness, and I am certainly not weak.
Amy Sullivan, survivor, in control, shiny.
If you are knocked down, get up. If you collapse, get up. If you can’t muster an ounce of strength, too bad, get up.
Does this kind of attitude come from a girl whose lived a charmed life or a girl whose experienced a few too many of life’s horrors?
I’d tell you, but I’m much too shiny.
Then, my world changed. My family decided to stop striving for the next big thing, and instead put our focus on the Real Thing, God.
A funny thing happens when you let God lead. You learn.
Initially, I thought my family was learning about service, but the further we trek, the more I see we are learning about mercy.
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
I once read, “Biblical mercy is more than showing sympathy for one of our children who is sick. It’s the response we show to the kid down the street from a broken home who has shattered our garage windows three or four times.”
Mercy is more than feeling bad. Anyone can feel bad. That’s sympathy. Poor kid, rough life.
Mercy is becoming involved broken windows and all. Poor kid, what can I do?
Question for you: What are your thoughts on mercy? Do you show mercy easily, or do you get stuck at sympathy?
(Great questions, Amy!)