Verse 8 ESV
The LORD is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
- The Lord passed in front of Moses, calling out, “Yahweh! The Lord! The God of compassion and mercy! I am slow to anger and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness. Exodus 34:6 NLT
- But you, O Lord, are a God of compassion and mercy, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness. Psalm 86:15 NLT
- Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvationand my God. Psalm 42:5 ESV
- He has caused his wondrous works to be remembered; the LORD is gracious and merciful. Psalm 111:4 ESV
- Light dawns in the darkness for the upright; he is gracious, merciful, and righteous. Psalm 112:4 ESV
- Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful. James 5:11 ESV
You are full of mercy. You look outward with grace, overflowing with favor towards each of Your creation, particularly Your image-bearers, we humans. You are slow, reluctant, not in any hurry to display anger. You abound in unshakable, unmovable, persevering, constant, abundant love – active participation in my life to bring me to the very pinnacle of why You created me, for my own best interest – love.
You are compassionate and faithful, creative in how You work on my behalf – the purposes You have planned for me are in keeping with Your nature and Your love for me.
You are my salvation, not the means to my salvation. You are my righteousness, not the means to my righteousness. You are mercy and grace and patience and steadfast love in and through me. You are my God – past, present, and future! I am invited to look and see Your Presence in every detail of my life, even in those moments when evil intruded and brought harm and suffering to me or through me.
Do I believe You are who You say You are? Do I live in absolute confidence in Your compassion, mercy, patience, unfailing love and faithfulness? Am I willing to face the reality of my own doubts and uncertainties, and the ways I have listened and surrendered to the twisted partial-truths of the enemy convincing me You are not always who You say You are?
So the question that comes to mind is this: Do I experience You right where I am? For certainly, I cannot experience You where I am not! Neither can I experience You if I am unwilling to be present with myself, if I am running from the truth of how I am in this world or what I don’t want to know about myself or what I don’t want to face about what has happened to me that brought pain or how I have caused pain. Presence. I must be present with myself in order to truly experience Your Presence in and with me. Then I can also be truly present with others – undivided as I sit with them right where they are.
Truly, just as the Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, filled compassion and steadfast in His love for me, even so He desires to be all that through me. Where do I see His mercy, His grace, His patience, His compassion and the steadfastness of His love the most in my life? When I mess up; when I am forgetful; when I lose sight of His vision and purposes in my life. Where should I demonstrate His character the most? When others mess up, are forgetful, and fail to maintain God’s vision and purposes in their lives. This is becoming true. Intentionality of focus is needed; for these character traits only become true in me as I am renewed and filled with the Holy Spirit. These responses of God’s love are the nature of God, not the broken nature of humanity – they are the result of the Jesus-life in me!
Your Presence is only fully known as I am willing to be fully present with myself and with others. The true nature of my presence can only be accurately translated and understood and redeemed as I am in Your Presence. It is there that Your life is resurrected in me, in each and every one of us; eternal life out of the death that resulted from the separation sin leaves behind.
Death = denial, delusion, dissociation.
Life = purpose, power, presence.