This week, one of our children was struggling to follow directions. I had given this child an age-appropriate, every-day task that should have been done by lunch. The kiddo had other plans. By DAY TWO of this task, I was getting fed up. My own to-do list was a mile long. Instead of making progress, I had to keep stopping to check on this kiddo’s progress (which was practically nothing). I was angry. I said harsh words. I was at a loss to know how to get this task done without doing it myself.
Suddenly, I felt a gentle Whisper inside…
“Carol, remember all those times when you have failed? Remember when you were so stuck in your mess that you couldn’t move? Did I lecture you about what you should be doing? Or did I reach down to do what you couldn’t do yourself? Go do for that child what I have done for you.”
I went to my sweet and naughty little one. I didn’t do the task myself, but I had the kiddo race against the clock to see how fast it could be done. In about ten minutes, the task that should have been finished 24 hours earlier was finally complete. Even better than that…our home was peaceful again.
I don’t know what my child learned, but I sure learned a lot from this little object lesson about the Father’s love and mercy.
Jesus told his disciples a story along these lines…
“…The Kingdom of Heaven can be compared to a king who decided to bring his accounts up to date with servants who had borrowed money from him. In the process, one of his debtors was brought in who owed him millions of dollars. He couldn’t pay, so the king ordered that he, his wife, his children, and everything he had be sold to pay the debt. “
But the man fell down before the king and begged him, ‘Oh sir, be patient with me, and I will pay it all.’ Then the king was filled with pity for him, and he released him and forgave his debt. But when the man left the king, he went to a fellow servant who owed him a few thousand dollars. He grabbed him by the throat and demanded instant payment. His fellow servant fell down before him and begged for a little more time. ‘Be patient and I will pay it,’ he pleaded. But his creditor wouldn’t wait. He had the man arrested and jailed until the debt could be paid in full.
“When some of the other servants saw this, they were very upset. They went to the king and told him what had happened. Then the king called in the man he had forgiven and said, ‘You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous debt because you pleaded with me. Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?’ Then the angry king sent the man to prison until he had paid every penny.
“That’s what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters in your heart.”
Our Father has extended me grace and forgiveness more times than I could ever count…on a daily basis! Sometimes I just can’t get things right, no matter how hard I try. I need the Father to reach in and rescue me. We ALL need to be rescued. We ALL get ourselves so stuck in our messes that we can’t get ourselves out of them.
Let’s remember what God does for us.
Let’s extend God’s mercy to others.
Who knows…you might be the object lesson God uses to draw someone to Him!