Who is a God like You, who pardons iniquity And passes over the rebellious act of the remnant of His possession? He does not retain His anger forever, Because He delights in unchanging love. He will again have compassion on us; He will tread our iniquities under foot. Yes, You will cast all their sins Into the depths of the sea. ~Micah 7:18-19, NASB
Mercy and compassion. Two of the most beautiful words penned.
When I work with the kids in Awana, I have a practice of beginning with the bad news: we’re filthy in our hearts. We look together at Jeremiah 17:9 — the heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can know it. Often times these precious ten and eleven year olds can’t seem to grasp the idea that all of us are hopelessly sinful. Dirty.
But me? The more I see of myself, the more I struggle with the darkness of sin in my heart, the more I grasp that I need cleaned. I desperately need a savior. Here’s what I have a hard time grasping: because He delights in mercy He will again have compassion on us and remove our iniquities.
That kind of compassion honestly blows me away.
My son was recently sick. Puked all over himself and the carpet. Ew. I mean yuck. No one wants to touch that kind of mess. But I’m his mommy, and I love my baby boy. So, I put him in the bath, washed his smelly little body, got him some water and a fresh pair of pjs, and then put him back to bed. And then got to work on the carpet. Scrubbed it until the mess and the smell was gone.
I didn’t tell him to get to cleaning. I didn’t even expect him to help. Compassion washed over me as I tucked my sick boy into his bed. It stayed in my gut even as I set myself to the task of puke evacuation.
Nothing shows love quite like the willingness to clean up someone else’s nasty mess.
I often wonder what Jesus is thinking, feeling, when he cleans my putrid heart. This again? When will she ever learn? Or, This is the last time. I’m not doing this again.
No. Because He delights in mercy, and lavishes His compassion upon me.