Go, learn what this means, ‘It is mercy I desire, not sacrifice.’
For I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.
When so many jockey for privilege and position, with whom do you locate your life?
In Haiti they say:
We see from where we stand.
So, how we stand, and with whom becomes critical.
By-standing is not the same as with-standing,
and understanding is the fruit
of much more than standing still.
Humble solidarity with the castigated ones,
soaking together under mercy’s reign,
invites refreshing reconciliation.
For you, Holy One, are good and full of mercy,
abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.
We might, for a time, stay safe in our heads,
protected by sureties, shoring up opinions,
polishing personal perspectives on everything and everyone.
But sooner or later, seeping through the cracks,
mercy usurps personal preeminence
by exposing our failings and fallacies.
And, when we fall, as surely we shall, we all want mercy.
But first we must pay the admission;
stooping humbly through the low doorway to forgiveness.
What was cruel has become merciful. What is now merciful was never cruel. I have always overshadowed Jonas with My mercy and cruelty I know not at all. Have you had sight of Me, Jonas my child? Mercy within mercy within mercy. Thomas Merton
Perhaps this is why mercy feels cruel.
Fractured by failure, deluded by disappointment,
we are forced to face pain, darkness, and chasms too deep.
Our calloused hearts chafe
at compassion’s unction,
as they soak and soften in sorrowful grace.
Debilitated or dispirited
by burdens beyond us
we bend, and like the children we always are, we cry out.
No one can be excluded from the mercy of God; everyone knows the way to access it and the Church is the house that welcomes all and refuses no one. Its doors remain wide open, so that those who are touched by grace can find the certainty of forgiveness. The greater the sin, so much the greater must be the love. Pope Francis
When life breaks down,
love breaks out,
mercy over-sweeps us and we are worn permeable.
If this has not yet
happened to you,
mercy might be long overdue.
There are circumstances that must shatter you; and if you are not shattered, then you have not understood your circumstances. In such circumstances, it is a failure for your heart not to break.
Lord have mercy,
on the land, and on the air.
Christ have mercy, on creatures everywhere.
Christ have mercy on my sister, on my brother.
Lord have mercy on that strange
and most blessed sacrament of the other.
So, if today you hear compassion’s call,
from your core (with courage) respond,
and, free to forgive, let yourself by mercy be undone.
Find me on Facebook and Instagram: @InTheStormStill
Coming in November 2019, A New Book by Joe Grant