In the story of the woman with the issue of blood, she obtained mercy the minute she touched the hem of Jesus garment because she believed it will make her whole. We know this because the scripture says she heard of Jesus but the result did not only come through hearing; she also saw something. The light of God was shone in her heart and it made her know the thought of God concerning her situation. The minute you see the light in any situation you find yourself, you have obtained mercy. Once light comes in, the change in that situation starts. In the same way nobody had to convince Paul because he did not believe in the messiah but when he saw, he knew in his heart and said ‘this is Jesus’. So when you obtain mercy, you see something.
In 2 Corinthians 4:7 Paul says’ But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. The treasure we have is when power begins to come into operation in the things that we do or believe God for. It comes as a result of the light that is on the inside of us. Paul continued in 2Corinthians 4:13 saying, ‘We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak; Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you. When God begins to raise you up then grace is at work but when you get the revelation that is the mercy of God at work in your life.
The problem is many people are trying to get grace without obtaining mercy first. They are trying to get grace out of prayer. This means they believe that the amount of pressure I put in prayer by talking about the problem will change the situation. When Jonah prayed, light came into his heart and he saw it. God showed him His will which was for him to go back to preach in Nineveh and Jonah said ‘alright, Father I thank you for complete deliverance out of the belly of this whale. The minute he started thanking God, the Lord moved everything on the outside to his favour. So what mercy shows you, nobody knows. That is why Paul prayed that God would give him the spirit of wisdom and revelation that the eyes of his understanding might be enlightened (Ephesians 1:17-18). The manifestation of this scripture in your life is a function of mercy. There was a time Daniel said ‘I heard a voice but nobody else saw the vision- I alone saw it’ (Daniel 10:7). So people can hear a voice, but it is mercy that determines what you see.
To receive mercy does not mean to search one’s soul for answer. Rather it is simply to know God’s thought about the situation. Psalms 13:1-6 says, ‘How long wilt thou forget me, O LORD? For ever? How long wilt thou hide thy face from me? How long shall I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart daily? How long shall mine enemy be exalted over me? Consider and hear me, O LORD my God: lighten mine eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death; Lest mine enemy say, I have prevailed against him; and those that trouble me rejoice when I am moved. But I have trusted in thy mercy; my heart shall rejoice in thy salvation. I will sing unto the LORD, because he hath dealt bountifully with me.
To take counsel in one’s soul means to seek for the solution in oneself. This means you find yourself in a difficult situation and you are looking for the solution in your soul. This is exactly the direction Satan wants us to take. What the devil has done is that he blinds the minds of people. This means the more you think the less you see anything; this is the blindfold. The more you think about it, the more sorrowful you get because day after day, you see no way out. All that David wanted according to the above scripture was LIGHT in his eyes. He said let the thoughts of God concerning this situation hit my heart- ‘once I get it then I will offer praise and the earth will move in the direction of my thoughts. But what people are doing is they are praying to God to change their situation on the outside. This is because they do not really have the thoughts of God obtained through mercy which ought to come first. For it is the mercy of God that opens our eyes. That is why it is not of him that willeth or him that runneth but God that showeth mercy (Romans 9:16). My prayer is that may we never take God’s mercy for granted and may we receive it in any challenge we face. Amen.
Pastor Poju Oyemade