This morning my 6 year old Rachel broke a lamp. She is doing jobs to earn money to replace the lamp. Restitution. I think it’s important to teach our children to make restitution when we can.
But this made me think. Sometimes we can’t make restitution. Sometimes we make such a mess that there is no way we can make up for it. That’s when Mercy shows up.
Our 3 year old drew on the bathroom wall with black permanent marker recently. I thought fingernail polish remover was taking it off, but it didn’t end up doing the full job. Silas can’t make restitution. He’s only 3, and he can’t repaint the bathroom wall. The black mark is there until someone bigger and more capable can make it white and new again. So, we show him mercy and do the job that he cannot do.
Sometimes I make a mess of my life. I end up with broken glass on the floor and black marks all over the clean walls, so to speak. And often the mess is too big for me to handle. Too much for me to fix. Too costly even for me to make restitution. And then the only thing I can do is call out for Mercy. I am so thankful Mercy is following close behind me. Right there with Goodness. God knows I need them close-by because of my propensity for messing things up. So God sends His Goodness and Mercy walking with me all the days of my life.
People often ask me how I handle six small children. Well, it’s because of my faithful shadows, Goodness and Mercy. God’s Goodness and Mercy right here helping me when I get in a mess so big I can’t get out of it, but also right here with me for the little messes, the sad times, the lonely times, the crazy-hectic times, and the times when one of me is just not enough.
Goodness and Mercy are also sweet companions for the happy, joyful times too. I feel their presence when things are going smoothly and we are laughing. Actually, it’s because of their presence that things do go smoothly.
Goodness and Mercy are God’s own presence with us. With these traveling companions, I don’t need anything or anyone else. My cup is full to overflowing.