Mercy Road: The Road Well-Traveled - Susan J. Knowles

Mercy Road

Everyone occasionally stopping to stare,
Seems like no one can take time to pause and share,
Everybody’s busily scurrying on past,
Living life out of touch but it just won’t last.

There’s always been a time and certainly a place,
In this complicated world when we have to face,
That we’ve all felt a need to unburden our load,
As we make our way slowly down God’s Mercy Road.

Take a good long look in the mirror today,
Clear away the cob webs and peer through the haze,
For the people you’ve been judging and now realize,
Have your nose, your chin; your perfectly good eyes.

So, don’t live a life that’s unforgiving; unfair,
‘Cause some day you may find yourself caught in the lair,
On the path of deep hardship pursuing pardon for sins sowed,
Somewhere along with others; lost but in need of finding Mercy Road.

Where is “Mercy Road” and how do I get there, you may be asking? It’s a road with which we should all be very familiar. In fact, you may not even realize that you’ve been on it before but may have forgotten how to find your way back.

All of us from time to time have gotten so busy that we’re not paying attention to what’s going on around us. We may pass right by people who are in need without even giving them a second thought. Appointments await us that are far more pressing, it seems, than stopping to ask our neighbor how they are and if there is anything we can do to help. Or we may have had an argument with a loved one that has left us feeling disconnected. We know we should apologize but sometimes we can have too much pride and too little time to place that call. We’ve all been there. Life just seems to be moving at an even greater rate of speed every day. Getting kids off to school, arriving at work on time to meet a million deadlines with barely enough time to eat lunch has become our daily routine. Service to others and forgiveness may have taken a back seat. But should this be how we live our lives?

What about when we need help or forgiveness? Will we reach out to others only to be ignored because they, like us, are too caught up in daily responsibilities with too little time to spare? Even our family members can lose touch with us because let’s face it, they’re busy too! 

Mercy road, of course, is a creative way of describing the path we all find ourselves on when we are burdened and in search of needed relief. It is a road we’ve all traveled down before and will again. The pace on this road can vary depending on whether we are currently dealing with a burden or not. For those of us not presently in need of help or forgiveness it is a fast paced ride. One in which self can become more important than the needs of others. However, for those seeking mercy due to a present crisis or struggle, such as a difficult financial situation, the loss of a loved one, drug addiction or other uphill battles, the road to mercy can be a very long and lonely trip. This should give us all pause to look at our own lives and see ourselves in others. Take time to feel what those in need may be feeling. Pray for them and their situations. As people, we may come in many shapes, sizes, and colors. However, we are all children of God and in need of His mercy.

As Christians, we have been told that we were made in the image of Christ to teach the gospel to the world (Mark 16:15). We are to be an example of Christ by our behaviors and service to others. Showing mercy and forgiveness to our Christian and non-Christian brothers and sisters is but one example of how we profess to the world that we are followers of Christ. So, the next time you see someone on Mercy Road you may want to stop and lend a helping hand, even if you’re busy.

Thankfully, God is never too busy to hear our prayers, feel our suffering, and offer us His unending mercy. The next time you find yourself on Mercy Road, remember that God is right there with you ready to give you mercy when you seek Him with your whole heart (Jeremiah 29:13).

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