Thorns among the Barbs

Thoughts on my journey to heaven

Anger is not forever

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Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy. –Micah 7:18

Isn;t it great to know that God is not like us. When I read this verse today I felt instant peace to know that while I will make mistakes, the anger is replaced with mercy, and the sins are pardoned.

And the application is this – In my soul how am I embracing this fact as I deal with others. I have to tell you I struggle with a specific coworker who raises all the buttons, and knows just how to offend in a way that is indisputable. I don;t know her heart, but the repeated behavior suggests this is her pattern, and it is intentional. But I know I must not be angry toward her, and instead forgive her, and demonstrate by faith how God demonstrates his forgiveness and mercy to me.

I love the choice of words in this quote – God demonstrates Grace to the remanant of his heritage. In order to unpack this verse we need to know that Micah wrote at a time of strife. The people of Israel had been in captivity, and many were destroyed by the enemy. But the Lord was faithful to preserve a small portion of the people – a remnant. And this small portion would carry on the tradition, the knowlege, the faith in God.

How can this possibly apply to us? This christian life is a war. Our mind and heart is constantly under attack with the enemy’s goal of luring us from the truth. We will make mistakes, succomb to the sin nature, and sin against God. But- we do not need to remain there. Our sin may raise the anger of our God, but we need not be completely dismayed because as we yield to his good hand, confess our sin and turn away from it we will know his mercy and forgiveness.

God;s anger is righteous, just and correct. Our anger is not always justified.

Mercy Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French merci, from Medieval Latin merced-, merces, from Latin, price paid, wages, from merc-, merx merchandise
Date: 13th century
1 a : compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one’s power; also : lenient or compassionate treatment b : imprisonment rather than death imposed as penalty for first-degree murder
2 a : a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion b : a fortunate circumstance <it was a mercy they found her before she froze
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Here are a few questions I have asked myself:
1. What have I done wrong, and how have I sinned against God today?
2. Have I confessed this, and stopped, turned away from that behavior?
3. How would Jesus respond?
4. How can I take tangible steps to change my behavior?
5. Have I prayed?
6. If clearly another is involved, have I goned to them for forgiveness, confession?

Lord, thank you for your infinate grace and mercy toward me. Thank you that you do not remain angry with my failures, and my sinful patterns. Thank you that you are intentional about dealing with sin, and getting us to move on. May I remain teachable and in your hands always. And may I be more like you in demonstratng my forgiveness and showing mercy toward those who offend me. It is only by your power, your wisdom and your grace that I can do this. Amen”

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Written by Barbara Bloom

October 3, 2009 at 10:10 AM

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