The Depth and Enormity of God's Mercy
by John Penn
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This Healing Moment is based on Psalm 103, which expands upon Moses’ new revelation of God, concerning His mercy and grace offered toward Israelites in Exodus 34:6-7, that is also offered to all of humanity.
Meditating on Psalm 103 is a powerful way to experience the depth and enormity of God’s mercy, love, forgiveness, and healing grace. Somewhere I read that it is not punishment that draws us to God, but love. It is not our brokenness that glorifies God, but our well being. The closer we draw to God (or allow God to get close to us), the more we will experience divine mercy and grace, which is a demonstration of forgiveness, healing, and salvation.
Today’s Healing Moment centers on visualization or imagination and focused prayer. To have wholeness, we must work toward having wholeness in all dimensions of life: spirit, body, mind, and relationships. Most people only seek healing in their bodies—physical healing. Jesus healed the whole person. However, we often, put up barriers or obstacles to God’s healing grace. With God’s help, we can remove those obstacles, so that God’s healing presence and power can flow to us and bring us the healing that we need and desire. This is God’s ultimate desire for us.
It is important to remember that we don’t get sick over night and most often, we don’t get well over night. Healing is a process. The psalmist reminds us of the provisions that God has made to bring us healing and wholeness, and salvation: “He forgives your sins…He heals your diseases…He redeems you from hell…He crowns you with love and mercy… He wraps you in goodness… and He renews your youth” (Psalm 103:3-5, The Message).
The psalmist is confident and affirms that God desires our highest good and wants everyone to be a whole person. Why? You and I matter to God. Because of what Jesus did for us on the cross, God’s healing stream of mercy and grace is always available to us. Healing is in the atonement.
Read this psalm slowly three times. The first time, allow the words of verses one to three, to speak to you. The second time read it prayerfully. Read it in a personal way, the third time. Substituting the personal pronouns “our,” “us,” and “we” for “me,” “my,” “I,” to make the verses personal. What word or phrase captures your attention? Meditate on them. Write in your journal any new insight you have gained.
Pray this prayer out loud. One way to demonstrate your humility, before you pray, is to place your palms of your hands down, or palms down on top of your thighs. This is a sign of humility. When you finish saying this prayer, turn your palms upward, as an act of receiving something from God. This is a sign of receptivity, expectation, or thankfulness. Feel free to change this prayer to meet your specific needs for personal grace. “God of mercy and love, thank you for loving me unconditionally. Thank you for demonstrating your love for me, and for the whole world, by allowing Jesus to die on the cross for our sins. Forgive me of all of my sins. I admit Gracious God that I am often anxious and worried about things that I cannot change. I fear pain. I fear rejection. Release me from all of my fears. Reach deep down inside of me and gently heal my painful past that causes me so much distress. Heal those memories and scars that hold me captive. Make me whole in my spirit, body, mind, and relationships. Lord, I believe! Help my unbelief. Thank you Lord; for my complete healing, in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
As you silently focus on the words of this prayer, use your imagination to picture God’s love and healing presence enveloping you, and flooding every cell, tissue, organ, and system in your body. Visualize the light of Christ dispelling the dis-ease within you. Spend as much time in God’s healing light, as long as you need to. Do not be afraid to allow that healing light to expose areas of your life that you were not aware of, or that make you feel uncomfortable. This is a part of the healing process. As you linger in God’s light, ask the Holy Spirit to help you discern any resistance to wellness that you hold within.
Some people will receive forgiveness from God, but struggle with forgiving themselves. If this applies to you, ask the Holy Spirit to help you to forgive yourself. Remember, if we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us (1 John 1:9). Therefore, you ought to forgive yourself. Remember, the psalmist says that God forgives “all” of our sins, in verse three.
Give God thanks for healing every aspect of your life, including your broken relationships. The psalmist tells us that God not only forgives us of all of our sins, but also casts them from us, as far as east is from the west. The psalmist also reminds us that God heals all of our diseases as he forgives all of our sins. We are to “expect” to be forgiven and healed, as we experience God’s mercy and grace. The apostle James connects healing and the forgiveness of sin as a means of healing grace (James 5:14-16).
Give God praise for cleansing your heart from all wrong thinking and wrong behaviors. Remember our life is an open book before God. Remember, God accepts us just as we are, but loves us too much, to leave us the way we are. This demonstrates the depth and enormity of God’s mercy and love for us.
See your healing, as empowerment to be used by God to bring healing to others. Thank God for your healing. Use every opportunity God gives you to use your new health, as a blessing for others you care deeply for. Pray for their healing. Encourage them to live holy lives before God. Dedicate your life to being more honest, purposeful, and alive.
As a sign of your gratitude to God for healing you, choose a lifestyle that promotes wholeness and holiness. This act of gratitude will bring glory and honor to God.
1. How comforting is it to know that God is full of grace and mercy toward us?
2. What obstacles did you discern within that could potentially block God’s healing power? 3. How are you using your well being to serve others in Christ’s name?
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