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Life of an Ordinary Aussie Woman

Thursday, 6 February 2014


God showed me this passage of scripture this morning Matthew 12:1-8

I knew that The Lord was illustrating to me that my life needs to be defined more by His mercy than by my loving service to Him…

I have realised of late that I am a lot like Martha in scripture…busy doing and serving as a way of expressing my gratitude to The Lord for His love, mercy and grace.

I have also realised that it is easier for me to busy myself serving, than rather truly loving others whom I am not necessarily so comfortable around.

In Greece at Delphi the Lord revealed some of my heart to me and I realised that I had become somewhat like Jonah…and I am thinking this morning about how easy it is for us to become like the Pharisees Jesus is addressing in this Matthew passage.

As Christians I believe it’s natural to have a zest for God and the desire for His Kingdom to rule here on Earth here and now…I mean we have experienced His goodness and understand how awful sin is…I know how much sin can even make me feel physically nauseous!

However the reality is that even though God’s Kingdom is alive in us, it still is yet to fully come and we are in a waiting stage for our King to return and fully establish His Kingdom here on Earth…so how we wait matters…

Yes I believe it is right to lead a serving life dedicated to Jesus, I need to say this upfront…as scripture says that we are to present ourselves as a living sacrifice to the Lord (Romans 12).

However the Matthew passage is challenging because Jesus says God desires mercy not sacrifice…

I believe that this is a clear warning for us not to become so zealous doing good deeds that we get burnt out, tired, uncompassionate and deaf to The Spirit’s leading…As this could cause non-Christians to not see God’s offering of love, forgiveness and grace and after all this is the Gospel message for all people!

God desiring mercy above sacrifice or service reminds me again that The Lord cares first and foremost about the state of our heart, for if our heart is truly dedicated to Him mercy will define our lives…Jesus said that others will know we are His disciples by what?   LOVE!

Love is mercy to the undeserving – it’s what we received and God offers to ALL PEOPLE!

I do not always lead a Christian life defined by mercy…I need to be honest, but this IS my desire.  Why?  Because it’s God’s desire for me, and for all His children.

I believe if we truly love The Lord we must desire to live a life defined by mercy so that we do not become a stumbling block to others seeking God.

I am thinking that I need to do less serving and more loving…I need to spend more time with Him so that there can be less of me and more of Him shining to others.

In love, Melanie.


Joel said...

I can so identify to this. Great post Melanie! :)

Dazza said...

Love that thought its so true.
I am still learning the same thing from teaching on Ephesus and Thyatira from Rev 2.
Easy to live in Ephesus much harder to live in Thyatira
But it's love made it the only growing church.

Melanie Baker said...

Thanks Dazza, gr8 parallel and what a timely comparison for me just having visited the 7 church sites in Turkey last month :D

Dazza said...

God showed me that love trumps doctrine . And your Matthew passage shows Mercy trumps sacrifice. I have been looking for the balance point but reflecting on your post leads me to think there is no balance point
Love and mercy leave doctrine and sacrifice high and dry
Light weights outweighed by the heavy weights of love and mercy on the other end of the see - saw.
Bless ya

Melanie Baker said...

Your response and analogy of the see-saw has been running through my head today Dazza...Jesus def did not try to balance the see-saw with his interactions with the Pharisees. We know that He challenged them considerably on where their heart lay in relation to their 'sacrifices' religious practices and putting hard to bear burdens on ppl! They def put sacrifice above mercy. Have been prompted to remember that James 2:13 says MERCY triumphs judgement also. I think mercy is LOVE IN ACTION and Paul reminds us in 1 Cor 13 - that the greatest of all virtues is love.
Thanks for your gr8 comments.

Dazza said...

So glad the see- saw was helpful. I have had the love and mercy combination in my head all day as well.
I just realized that doctrine and sacrifice could be seen as the religious end of the see- saw and the love and mercy end connects with the real world.
Jesus connects in the real world thru love and mercy
Bless ya

Melanie Baker said...

The other scripture I was thinking of finally came back to my mind this morning - relating to the see-saw and 'weightier matters of the law' which Jesus said to the Pharisees in Matt 23:23
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. It is these you ought to have practiced without neglecting the others. NRSV

Dazza said...

I thought I was done with this but God won't allow me to let it go

That verse adds some interesting new dimensions I have to see what god does with that.
The see- saw has hit me on the head again!
I termed one end religion, one of our pastors often berates religion in relation to relationship I have found it annoying but god hit me over the head
Even found a gr8 graphic with gold on the down end
Love mercy yes and faith .
Thanks for this

Melanie Baker said...

You're welcome Daz, God is Good and this type of interaction is great :))