Everything and Nothing

I am everything and nothing—his mercy carries me. The paradox of feeling like I am everything and nothing is a concept not uncommon to the Christian life because well He works in completely radical ways.

My life is an on-going change, and at times, it is difficult keeping up. I am achieving goals I didn’t even have set for myself, and I am seeing my dreams unravel before my own eyes. It’s a beautiful life he has given me, but I want to make one point for certain. This is all by mercy. It is not me who deserves or even made happen anything: His mercy is all I have. In order to fully experience satisfaction in accomplishments and even failures, we have to accept that we are incapable of doing anything on our own. If we don’t accept the mercy of God that’s fine, but too often I have seen many “successful” people full of unhappiness and anxiety because well your plan is too small compared to the plans He has for you and the emptiness will always be there.

I want to invite you to experience His mercy in your life. Take a second and realize how great your God is. Three easy steps to live His mercy:

1. Be merciful with others. Realize that our God has been so generous despite our filthiness, so why should we limit our love and service to all… even to those who are harder to love. I’m pretty sure we are difficult to love at times as well, but our merciful God has never even thought about not loving us.

2. Live in gratitude. Yes, this includes prayer!! WHAT! Take a moment every day and just thank Him for loving on you the way He does even when it’s darker times. This step also goes beyond praying, let’s stop complaining. Complaining is literally us not taking what we have and accepting it as God’s plan. Live in such a way that everyone around you knows you are thankful, thankful for all He has done despite our misery.

3. Practice patience. Don’t rush it! He knows what He is doing. There is no better way to let His mercy work than to persevere, strive, and work your butt off and let Him do the impossible. Obviously, this doesn’t mean sit on your butt and let Him do everything because well that’s just not how it works, but that’s a whole other topic! This last step has been the hardest for me to accept and really live because I am a planner. But I will proudly say that my God and I are working as a team and now things are happening just as they should—in ways I could have never planned with my small-minded plans.

I am everything because He has loved me since before the day I was born, but I am nothing because I am a sinner. The only way this paradox can work efficiently is accepting and living His mercy.

God’s mercy can make even the driest land become a garden, can restore life to dry bones (cf. Ez 37:1-14). … Let us be renewed by God’s mercy, let us be loved by Jesus, let us enable the power of his love to transform our lives too; and let us become agents of this mercy, channels through which God can water the earth, protect all creation and make justice and peace flourish. – Pope Francis

Joandra Ocampo – Writer, unparalleled love

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