Five Minutes on Mercy

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I can still hear their little voices answering the questions, right before they were challenged to read the Greek alphabet.

“What is grace?” “Getting something you don’t deserve.”

“What is mercy?” “Not getting something you deserve.”

{I think that’s right. They were better than I was at not mixing up the two related words!}

Deserve is probably my least favorite word in the English language. Want to make me livid? Show me a stream of commercials telling me what I deserve: a new convertible, a day at the spa, time for myself, clothes, a fairytale romance, McDonald’s for lunch.

Do I deserve any of that? No. What would make me deserve it? You know what I deserve?

To spent an eternity separated from God because of my sin.

“Thank God, he’s not fair. He is just, but he is not fair. Because someone sinned, someone must die. In his mercy, God sent his Son, Jesus, as a sacrifice for our sins. If we know Jesus, he doesn’t give us what we deserve. We read earlier in Romans 6:23, ‘The wages of sin is death.’ That’s what we deserve. But that verse doesn’t end there. It continues, ‘But the gift of God is eternal life.’ Thankfully, we don’t always get what we deserve…” – Craig Groeschel, Confessions of a Pastor

It’s easy to see how we get tangled in debt, isn’t it? It’s SO simple to validate a purchase with the words “I deserve it.”

I would challenge you, though, to think on that. Why would we deserve more than our brother or sister in the Gambia or Thailand or down the street?


Today, I looked at my sweet baby Joshua. Talk about something I don’t deserve! We were trying to prevent pregnancy. When I saw those two lines, I was flat-out mad. Not another nine months. Not another trying-to-make-it-trying-to-parent-other-small-children-while-in-pain-and-throwing-up.

And yet here he is, in my arms, the sweetest, happiest baby in the world.

God’s small act of mercy in my life, giving me this third child I didn’t think I was ready for.

Just a whisper of His Big Act of Mercy, giving me life long before I had breath in my lungs.

Thank You, Lord Jesus. For crossing out all my “deserves” and stamping them over with the word Mercy.


Five Minute Friday is where we write for five minutes about one word with no editing. It’s hosted by Lisa-Jo, the Gypsy Mama. 

7 thoughts on “Five Minutes on Mercy

  1. I am also so thankful that God has poured out His mercy to flow freely in this life of mine, even when I don’t see it. He always knows what is best for us. I really enjoyed your post! I’m your neighbor at #FMF. Have a wonderful weekend, friend.

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