Daily Word of Grace # 98 (July 30, 2020)
One of the most beautiful (and relatable) collects in The Book of Common Prayer is this: “O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy: Be gracious to all who have gone astray from your ways, and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of your Word, Jesus Christ your Son; who with you and Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen” (218). God is a merciful God, thankfully, always and forever. Scripture assures us God’s mercies “never come to an end; they are new every morning” (Lamentations 3:22-23) and that our Savior Jesus Christ remains our “merciful and faithful high priest” (Hebrews 2:17). Moreover, in The Prayer of Humble Access we are reminded that God is indeed “the same Lord whose property is always to have mercy” (BCP 337), and similarly in the collect at one’s burial we pray to “God, whose mercies cannot be numbered” (BCP 470). This is good news because “all who have gone astray from your ways” includes each one of us, no exceptions (Isaiah 53:6), and yet God’s glory still remains “always to have mercy.” In other words, God’s final word is a word of mercy. And in response to God’s mercy we are called to follow suit, as Jesus taught, “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful” (Luke 6:36).
Love and Prayers,