Let Your Mercy Flow

MERCY. A blessing or act of divine favor or compassion. I invite you into Musica Divina, or hearing God speak through music and lyrics. Listen to the song and read the reflections. Allow Mercy to flow.

The goodness of the Lord is the kindness of the Lord.

With every breath we take, the gift of life and grace.

The power of the Lord is the meekness of the Lord.

Who bore humanity with brave humility…

Let Your mercy flow through us.

Have Mercy on Me. Porters Gate

To be human is a gift of the breath of life and a journey, a struggle, a sharing of love, pain, and joy.  We are not alone, but have in common our blood, sweat, and tears with all people everywhere.  And we have a Lord God who bore humanity with brave humility. 

In the story of the God who became man, Mary the mother of Jesus, exemplifies our humanity in experiencing the joy of birthing the Son of God and the extreme grief of watching him die. Yet, she continued on in the community of followers offering her presence and wisdom, allowing herself to be cared for by a son from another mother. Surely mercy flowed through her.

GRIEF.  Deep sorrow caused by a great loss. 

My parents’ home was a place of both prayer and devotion and the symbols of their faith were in every room.  Over their bed was a beautiful mother of pearl rendition of Mary and Jesus, hand made in Vietnam.  Every day of hospice care, my sister and I said prayers from my mother’s prayer book and from memory of a lifetime of family prayers including the Lord’s prayer and the Hail Mary.  Without overthinking the theology of Mary, this prayer and the presence of Christ and all the saints who have gone before us, including Mary, filled the room with the hope of rising in Christ:

“Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and at the hour of our death.”

That hour of death, those hours and days of death, could only be survived with the brave humility of our shared humanity with Christ, and the faith of being together in a new creation beyond our imagination.

After losing my mother, I asked several friends my age who had lost parents, “How do you deal with this overwhelming grief?” The journey I traveled in accompanying my loved one through the last days of life brought connection, a bond of being human in a world where people are sharing grief.  One dear friend answered: “My mother’s death left me changed. The loss cut so deep that I could not monitor or control the depth of my emotions, and it waylaid me.”

Oh, dear friend, your words land true in my heart and help me grieve well.

Reflect. Where have you experienced an hour of death or loss? How have you shared your humanity with others? Have you received mercy through another?

The beauty of the Lord is the suffering of the Lord
Is Christ upon a tree, stripped of dignity
The glory of the Lord is the mercy of the Lord
Gives life for us to see a new humanity…

Let your mercy flow through us.

Have Mercy on Me. Porters Gate.

ACCOMPANY. Go somewhere with someone as a companion.

“In the best case, a dying person is accompanied by a person or people who love them fiercely and who will do everything they can — in their grieving, addled, imperfect way — to love their person faithfully to the very end.” David Gushee, Baptist News Global Opinion, May 17, 2021

Everyone is experiencing loss. Loss of a loved one in itself is horrible, yet grief has been compounded with restrictions keeping family from being present with suffering loved ones. Strangers have more access to the intimate and painful moments in last days.  One friend experienced deep frustration and pain seeing hospital staff having access to his grandmother in the nursing home, while he could only look in through the window. 

Our family experience with loss was different as  both my father and my mother lived out their last days at home, accompanied by love, 24/7 care, knowing all the legal and medical details were being taken care of by those they trusted.

It was a blessing to be able to carry out my mother’s wishes to be at home, yet in some ways it was a heavy physical, emotional, and spiritual burden to carry. The burden was shared by a caregiving community that included family, hospice care folks, and neighbors.  Mercy flowed through companions who walked with us through the mystery and misery of great loss.

Reflect. How can you be present to those around you, to accompany them as they walk their journey? What does it mean to you to be faithful to your person to the very end?

Bless the hands and feet
Of those who serve in need
Of the broken and ashamed
Bless the weary soul
The Lord will make us whole
God, speak peace to those afraid
May the words we speak
Build a bridge for peace
Your loving kindness shows the way
Open up our doors
Giving refuge for
All the weary and afraid…

Let your mercy flow through us.

Have Mercy on Me. Porters Gate.

PASS AWAY.  Depart this life.

As the one trusted with my parent’s estate, I have the responsibility to “dismantle” their earthly home and pass on the life they built to the next generation to carry forward.  We say our parents have “passed away,” but it seems the world and all its cares has passed away from them.  This dismantling has honestly been painful, a struggle to hold onto the “stuff” of their lives.  Yet I have come to see it better now as an opportunity and a privilege to reshape, repurpose, and retell the legacy of lives well lived and loved.  How can mercy dismantle “stuff” and flow freely through me?

Pray. May my hands and feet be blessed to carry forward faith and service, love and generosity.  Where I am weary Lord, make me whole.  Speak mercy and grace over mystery and fears.  Open my hurting heart as a refuge of goodness and kindness, let mercy flow through me.

Breath Prayer. “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.” 

Let Your mercy flow through us
Your mercy, Your mercy
Let Your mercy flow through us
Your mercy, Your mercy

The Porter’s Gate – Have Mercy On Me (feat. David Gungor)

Photo Credit: Good Shepherd, Sadao Watanabe

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Mark Irwin says:

    Robbi, thank you so much for sharing this. When my dad died two years ago I didn’t know he’d passed away until I got to the hospital, but the folks there were gracious enough to let me spend time with his body to begin my grieving.
    I want to hear more about musica divina, as music is such a part of my spiritual journey! Love & Peace.

    Like

  2. Sally says:

    Hi Robbi,
    This is a lovely post. I have had two ‘encounters’ with Mary–one in a dream, and one when I was composing a funeral to bury my husband’s mother, whom I had never met. I will tell you about them sometime. I am starting my DMin project now and leading a group dealing with death, divorces and loss of many kinds. It comes in so many forms–even when we have to leave behind a dream that we wanted very much. Each time and especially when we are grieving a person, we suffer deeply and must allow God to carry us. I love what you have written about mercy and ‘coming alongside’ someone. Hope you are well and we can talk again soon. Sally

    Like

  3. paulettar says:

    Robbi, this is so beautiful. Your words are so honest, clear, and also encouraging. As you continue this grieving and healing journey remember that many care deeply for you and have walked this path before. Peace to you and your family.

    Like

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