Angels of Mercy

18 10 2013

Mercy imitates God and disappoints Satan.

Saint John Chrysostom c. 347-407

Blessed are the merciful (Matthew 5:7).  Mercy could be defined as the virtue and act of showing kindness to those who are weak, suffering, or sick. It shows itself to those who are not able to reciprocate in any fashion.  It is akin to pity and compassion. The King James Version sometimes uses the word “lovingkindness” to describe this quality. Even though the word is antiquated, it is perfect in its description of mercy and needs  resurrected. Mercy is shown by God to us . Someone has said, “Every misery that I miss is a new mercy.” The best example of God’s mercy is the cross. Mercy is the cornerstone of God’s dealings with humanity, possibly the most important word in the Bible.  This characteristic should also be used to describe the treatment that all people need to show to others. Those who extend such mercy are called blessed.

My sister-in-law is in a Hospice House, dying of that terrible disease of cancer. She is surrounded by “Angels of Mercy.” I am not speaking of the celestial beings sent to minister to those who are the heirs of salvation (Hebrews 1:14), I am speaking about earth-bound humans sent to minister lovingkindness to those who are suffering. I speak of those men and women who work or volunteer for Hospice.

As a pastor, I have seen these angels of mercy in operation for over 30 years. They have never failed to amaze me with their respect for the life and dignity of all human beings. I remember with tears of gratitude the care they had shown to my dad in his last days here on this earth. I once again am a witness to these angels of mercy as they care for my sister-in-law, struggling with end-of-life issues.  One of these testified to me last night that if one were to pass away during the day or night without family present, that they would actually stay with that person until the end, playing soft music in the background and holding their hand.

It takes a special calling to care for people and then see them taken away  by the undertaker on a daily basis, but they do it. They do it without regrets. To all of you angels of mercy out there, THANK YOU!




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