Mercy and Steadfast Kindness

My awesome church organized a church-wide reading plan. Today is Day 3!
Here’s my take on what I read.

Scripture to Read

Proverbs 3, Matthew 8-10, Exodus 28:29-30


Devotional

Proverbs 3:3 says, “Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.”

Have you ever felt like a human bouncy ball— you’re just all over the place? I have and often do feel this way.

This is the first time in my life I have a choice to work or not to work. I have a choice to stay home and be with my girls. I have freedom to set new goals and pursue my passions. This sounds like an amazing time, doesn’t it?

I.don’t.like.it.

I don’t know what to do with myself most days. I bounce around from idea to idea and think every idea is a great one… so I MUST ACT ON IT! I share these ideas with my husband and now he just laughs and waits for me to bounce to another idea.

This is not who I want to be, an unsteady, inconsistent, easily influenced person.

Proverbs 3:3 struck me this morning and I found myself digging deeper. First off, faithfulness caught my attention and of course love. I immediately thought of how my inconsistencies lead to frustrations and stress— on my family and myself.

Let’s take a closer look at the beginning of verse 3: “Let love and faithfulness never leave you.”

Love in this verse is the Hebrew word chesed, which “implies personal involvement and commitment in a relationship beyond the rule of law,” (Vine’s Concise Dictionary). Another way to look at this word is to think of marriage; it’s both legal and relational. Chesed is a devotion that is steadfast and full of mercy. 

Faithfulness in this verse is the Hebrew word ’emeth, which is usually paired with chesed. This word means truth and reliability. Faithfulness is a devotion that is firm and true. 

In Matthew 9:13, Jesus tells a Pharisee, who questions Jesus about eating with sinners and tax collectors, “to go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Jesus desires relationship over religion and devotion over ritualistic behavior. He desires for us to be self aware, so that we can go out and make disciples; showing Him to the world. Before we can do that we need radical devotion that is full of love and faithfulness.

If there’s one area I’ve been consistent in, it’s been Him.

Back to Provers 3:3. The second part of that verse tells us what to do with loving kindness and faithfulness: “bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.”

In Exodus 28:29-30 we learn that the high priest, Aaron, wore a breastplate over his heart that bore the names of the twelve sons of Israel. This was to help Aaron make decisions for the Israelites in the presence of God.

What we clothe ourselves with is seen by others, it’s an outward display. What we write on our hearts is internalized and unseen by others. Aaron, the high priest, wore that breast piece as a reminder of the people and relationships that would be effected by his decisions.

We all have a sphere of influence and the ability to effect others with our decisions.

Jesus wants my devotion above any great idea. All He wants is a people that will follow Him when life takes unexpected turns and doesn’t turn out quite like we planned. He wants our hearts so full of Him that we pour out on to others.

Wear your relationships on your heart so that when life happens you remember what truly matters and who you are effecting with your decisions. Show mercy, act justly and walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8).

I’m learning, growing and making progress. Goals are being set, passions are being pursued, love is covering all of it. I will not be a bouncy ball any longer. I am a disciple, taught of the Lord. Obedient to God’s will with great peace and undisturbed composure, (Isaiah 54:13 amp).


Research & Define

blue letter Bible

  1. bind/binding
  2. love
  3. faithfulness

Related Scripture

2 Corinthians 3:3

Colossians 3:12


Questions & Reflections

  1. What are some areas that you need more loving kindness and faithfulness?
  2. What are you writing on the tablet of your heart?
  3. What are you fusing to your neck as a display for others to see?
  4. How does this verse remind you of your need for a Savior?

Memorize & Meditate

Proverbs 3:3


Pray

Heavenly Father, Thank you for this truth today. Thank you for providing tangible ways to live out your Word on a daily basis. I struggle in so many areas and need you loving kindness and faithfulness more than ever before. Teach me how to clothe myself with your love and faithfulness so that it pours out of me. Let my life lead others to you and not away from you. Holy Spirit show me what I’ve been writing on my heart and forgive me for any and all wrong motives and selfishness. I Pray this in Jesus’ name! Amen

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