Okay, there are a million ridiculous and terrible things going down in your life right now, am I right? The drama is through the roof, the expectations of others are out of control and all the stuff that could go wrong is going wrong at precisely the wrong moment, right? You have problems you can’t solve and people you simply can not handle in your face, and the pressure of all these things combined is enough to make you want to absolutely lose your mind!
What in the world are you supposed to do when you are completely and totally frustrated? How did you get there, and why does it always happen to you? A life with Jesus is supposed to be filled with all kinds of peace, isn’t it? So why do you sometimes feel like a frenzied, unstable, active volcano about to explode?
Well, let me begin by saying I’m sorry. The reason I’m saying this is simply because I know how you feel. I’ve been right there where you are countless times, and I’m sure I’ll be there again. It sucks to feel this way. It is such a helpless feeling when you are so frustrated that you just want to rage and rant and then tear the world apart. But the question is, how do you get out of it without getting arrested? In other words, what are you supposed to do in these moments? Well, as is usually the case, the answer to this very complicated and volatile issue is very simple. In fact, the main problem is that you have forgotten one little word.
Now, you may be thinking, “Wait, what? The reason I’m completely and totally frustrated right now is that I’ve forgotten one word? Are you crazy?” - but I’m not crazy. It’s true. And here’s the word: Mercy.
Yep. Mercy. The word you’ve forgotten is ‘Mercy.’ Here’s what I mean: When people are frustrated, it’s because their circumstances did not meet their expectations of their circumstances. In other words, I expected my day to go like this, but instead, it went like that and now I am rightfully pissed. You see what I mean? The problem is that we feel entitled to things being a certain way. We feel entitled to comfort. We feel entitled to owning nice things. We feel entitled to being surrounded by only fun and cool people all the time. We feel entitled to get our way at all times. The problem is that life doesn’t work that way. We don’t always get our way, and (here’s the deeper issue) we aren’t entitled to that anyway!
When the Apostle Paul was in a Macedonian dungeon, lying on his lacerated, bleeding back with his feet in the stocks, he was praising Jesus and saying things like, “Rejoice always! I will say it again, rejoice!” Now, that seems crazy, but when one of his jailers was ready to commit suicide, he knew exactly who to go to! He went to the guy who was happy when it didn’t make sense and said, “How in the world can I get some of whatever it is you’re on?!”
So, how could Paul be filled with joy and praising even in the most awful circumstances? He understood mercy. He understood that we aren’t entitled to anything, but have been given the mercy of God. We were dead in our sins! We were the enemies of God! We were lost, but in His mercy, God raised us up to life! God has freely poured out His love on us, filling our lives with blessings we could never earn! Every breath we breathe is by the mercy of God. Folks, this is such an important concept. If you are going to be a disciple of Jesus, you simply have to get this down! Keep the word ‘Mercy’ close to your heart. Keep it on your tongue. Live every single moment not in a sense of frustrated entitlement, but in the joyful gratitude of someone thriving on endless mercy.