This is an extension of the July 25 post Have Mercy. We reflect more on what our friend Matthew is teaching us (in a sense two friends named Matthew if you count the one who wrote the book almost 2000 years ago).
And on the mountain Jesus also taught:
μακάριοι οἱ ἐλεήμονες,
ὅτι αὐτοὶ ἐλεηθήσονται.
The merciful are blessed
because they will be shown mercy.
God is the source of mercy; we are to be conduits of mercy. We must first receive from God. If we receive mercy, we must also extend mercy. To better understand this, let’s look at an analogy from the geography of the Jordan River.
The Jordan (which means ‘Descender’) flows out of the Sea of Galilee down into the Dead Sea. The moving water is God’s life-giving mercy. The Sea of Galilee was a great spot to fish in Jesus’ time. The fish are people. You might have guessed this, but there are no fish in the Dead Sea, because it has no outlet and so mineral concentrations are too high.
So in the Jordan River valley, fish live where water flows. People live where mercy flows. The Jordan used to be large and teaming with fish, but now the fish aren’t doing so well because the flow has been diminished by dams.
People don’t do so well when they block the flow of God’s mercy. So let’s stop building dams and start passing on the mercy we receive. Let’s be like the Jordan, receiving water from on high and then passing it on to the people downstream. That’s where life happens.
Jordan my wife is a good reminder and her name is fitting, because she passes God’s mercy along to me every day.