Thursday, January 19, 2012

Discovering Fresh Mercy - M. Laycock

I’ve been doing the Joy Dare with Ann Voskamp and many others for the past couple of weeks. Ann has provided a list for us to follow, spurring us to notice three things each day that make us grateful for God’s grace and mercy. Some days it’s easy. Some days not so much. But even on those days the effort is worth it. Looking for gratitude. Looking for grace and mercy. How could you go wrong?

Well, we’re all human and we all do go wrong. I discovered even this process can take me off track in a subtle way. It was day eleven. We were to find three yellow things that struck us as “fresh mercy.” I hunted around my daughter’s small house, where I’m spending my days lately as I undergo radiation treatments. The first pick was sitting on the living room couch - a yellow afghan crocheted by my mother-in-law. The second was just as clear - a yellow turban I use to keep my bald head warm. It was the third item that gave me pause, not because it was hard to find - it was in the living room too - a retro chair my daughter covered herself - but it gave me pause because I realized I was focusing on the items, rather than the mercy or the One who dispensed it.

I found three things that were obvious, things that did bless me. But did I really recognize them as “fresh mercy?” That was the point of the exercise but I realized as I photographed my last pick, that wasn’t where my mind or heart was focused. I was focused on the finding, not on seeing how and why they were gifts from God.

So I took a few moments to ponder each one again. And I found the mercy was there, as easy to find as the objects themselves. I just had to take a few extra moments to recognize it. And the Joy Dare is working. The joy was there too, bubbling up as I recognized how much my God loves me. Enough to provide things like yellow afghans, turbans and retro chairs and then to show me that they are indeed fresh mercies dispensed to one who does not deserve them.

“If I say, “my foot slips,” Your mercy, O Lord, will hold me up.” Psalm 94:18


Dorene Meyer said...

Great post, Marcia, and a great reminder that we need to focus our attention on the Giver, not the gift.

Charles Van Gorkom said...

May the Lord bless you and fill you with His Light and deliver you from the last traces of all cancer!
Such are my prayers for you.

Marcia said...

Thanks, you two. :) M

Peter Black said...

Marcia, your grateful spirit and candid showing of what you learned about yourself (focusing on "the finding" vis-a-vis "seeing how and why they were gifts from God") are gifts of example to us, your readers, of how blessed it is to live in transparent humility and dependence on God.
I echo Charles' prayerful expression.

Marcia said...

Thanks for your kind words, Peter. :)

Glynis said...

Praying for you my friend. I, too, am doing the Joy Dare! What a wonderful way to force a body to slow down and really, realize the mercies and blessings, huh? Thanks for the reminder! x

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