Mercy, Resentment and YOU
The Extraordinary Life
Weekly Devotional Email
For Sunday, February 19, 2017
John 10:10 (ESV)
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
Dear Church Family,
Hunger & Thirst.
Jesus uses these two pieces of imagery to describe what our lives should look like.
He says once you’ve been poor in spirit –
Once you’ve been in mourning –
Once you’ve been meek –
THEN you’ll hunger and thirst after righteousness.
Nothing will reason you out of your hunger for it and nothing will quench your thirst for it.
You will hunger and thirst after righteousness.
Your truest desire in life will be to do what God wants you to do, not what you want to do.
Romans 12:1-2 (NLT)
1 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.
2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
Let God transform you in a new person by changing the way you think
How do we change our mind to hunger and thirst for righteousness?
How do we change the way we think?
How do we change what we have learned our whole lives?
How do we rewrite our identity?
How do we combat the lies of the Devil?
- Focus on victory one day at a time.
It’s like the old saying: “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.”
You take a lifetime of hungering and thirsting for the wrong things, we are not going to fix that in this message or overnight, for that matter. It will take time and so we break it down in bite-size pieces. You seek victory one day at a time and God will give you enough strength to change for one day. He will take care of you day by day as you put your trust in Him.
- Focus on doing good, not feeling good.
If you wait until you feel like changing, you’ll never change. You just won’t. That’s the way our minds work. But if you go ahead and do the right thing today, eventually your feelings will catch up with you. It’s always easier to act your way into a feeling than it is to feel your way into an action. If you wait to feel like it, you may be waiting for quite a bit of time.
- Focus on people who can help you.
I Corinthians 15:33 (NCV)
Do not be fooled. Bad friends will ruin good habits.
If you don’t want to get stung, stay away from the bees. The reverse is absolutely true. We need to find people in our live that will help us make the positive changes in your life.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (NIV)
9 Two are better than one,… 10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.
- Focus on His promises not our failures.
The final way we can help transform our mind is to focus on His promises not our failures.
You see, if you have turned the change process over to God and have resolved to live your life under His control the very best you can then God will work change in you through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Philippians 1:6 (NIV)
being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that God will only love you once you reach a certain level and that your past failures will prevent you from maintaining God’s love. The problem with thinking that you can earn God’s love is, logically speaking, that at some point you’ll do something that will un-earn His love.
Here’s the thing.
We usually get what we hunger and thirst for.
The problem is, when we hunger and thirst for things that this temporary earth can supply it just doesn’t satisfy. The promises of Heaven satisfy.
But the promises of this earth just don’t satisfy.
Sunday’s study will be difficult. It will address some hard issues in our life. Past hurts. Present resentments. The seemingly impossibility of mercy for those who have hurt us. This week we will specifically discuss WHY it’s important for us to be merciful and in the coming weeks we will address further HOW we can be merciful.
The best way to prepare for Sunday’s study is two-fold:
- Read the verses found later in this email about forgiveness, compassion and mercy.
- Pray and ask God to reveal to you the people in your life that need your mercy in their life.
The pathway to The Extraordinary Life…
Jesus gives us the pathway to this life in His sermon on the mount. This week we focus on Matthew 5:5.
Matthew 5:1-12 (NIV)
1 Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, 2 and he began to teach them. He said: 3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5 Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7 Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Bible Verses we’ll study together on Sunday…
Matthew 18:23-35 (NIV)
23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him.
25 Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.
26 “At this the servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’
27 The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.
28 “But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded.
29 “His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’
30 “But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt.
31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened.
32 “Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to.
33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’
34 In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.
35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”
Colossians 3:13 (NLT)
Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.
Ephesians 4:31-32 (NIV)
31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with ever form of malice.
32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Job 5:2 (TEV)
To worry yourself to death with resentment would be a foolish, senseless thing to do.
Mark 11:25 (TLB)
But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive you your sins too.
Matthew 6:12 KJV
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors
Matthew 9:36 (KJV)
But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them
Jude 1:22 (KJV)
…some have compassion, making a difference.
Questions for Personal Growth and Discovery…
- Why is mercy easy to receive and hard to give?
- How would you describe God’s mercy to you?
- How has God been merciful to you?
- Who in your life needs to be shown mercy?
- Have you shown that person mercy yet? Why or Why not?
- Who do you resent? Why or Why not?
- How does your resentment towards them affect you?
- How does your resentment towards them affect them?
Making the most of this study…
As we continue this study here are some ways to make the most of this study:
- Read Matthew 5:1-12 daily over the next few weeks.
- Memorize our theme verse for this new study listed above (John 10:10 NIV).
- Prepare your heart for next Sunday’s message with this weekly devotional email (if this was forwarded to you by a friend or loved one and you would like to be included, send an email to email@example.com or call the church office).
- Have questions during this study? Email them to firstname.lastname@example.org or text them to (541) 530-4912.
- Resolve now to be with each Sunday in our study ‘The Extraordinary Life’.
- Pray that God will help us understand the truths found in Matthew 5 that he will enable us to live the extraordinary life that He intends for us to live.
Let’s do this together. Let’s move from resentment to mercy into the loving arms of our Father together!
See you Sunday!
If you have been forwarded this devotional email and would like to subscribe to them weekly so they can be delivered directly to your inbox, simply send an email to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
To read Pastor’s Daniel’s latest blog post ‘Blessings’ go to www.roseburgfcc.org/blog.
Missed a Sunday and would like to hear the message? Simply visit www.roseburgfcc.org/sermons.
To stop receiving this weekly devotional email simply reply ‘STOP’ via email.