“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the LORD.”
In this passage from the prophet Isaiah, we get a picture of a forgiving, absolutely merciful God. Pardon is the manifestation of God’s compassion. Rather than punishing those returning to God, God embraces them. It can be easy to get frustrated at the mercy and compassion of God. As humans, we seek fairness and justice. It is tempting for us to desire for people to get their due, for them to receive punishment for what they’ve done wrong. We have a tendency to make God in our image, expecting God to react to people and events in a similar way that we react. Richard Rohr says, “We project onto God our way of loving.” As we reflect on gratitude during this season of Lent, we can be brutally honest with ourselves in saying that we are grateful for God being better than we could ever imagine. Not only is this good news, but it is humbling. We must set aside our slightly misunderstood images of God. How has your image of God limited you from seeing God’s compassion, grace, and mercy? How have you projected onto God your way of loving?