Lesson #5 – Gift of Mercy
Let’s recap! In Lesson #4 we learned about the motivational gift of GIVING and that this gift is provided to meet the various needs of people who do not have the means to provide fully for themselves, no matter the reason. Givers can be ministries, organizations, the church body, as well as individuals. The goal is to give encouragement and meet practical needs to express God’s love.
These children will give their own clothes or toys away if it means helping another in need. We learned that those with the motivational gift of giving are generally leaders. Like facilitators, they love to make lots of friends and would rather play with their peers than with toys. These children are people oriented!
We learned that there are some wonderful traits that children with the gift of giving have:
1. They are open and receptive, positive in nature, extremely friendly and agreeable.
2. They love to have something to give in the offering plate.
3. They are strong in nature yet take correction easily.
4. They are active and like to participate.
5. They prefer to play with friends as opposed to toys.
6. They are often leaders in their own right.
7. They do not want public recognition and usually do not want people to know who they are nor how much they gave.
8. They disapprove of anyone who gives for the wrong motive. Their motive is to further the work of God and meet real needs, not to show off or get something in return. These children get great joy from their giving and love to see others happy and fulfilled.
In This Lesson…
In this lesson we are going to learn more about the motivational gift of MERCY.
The gift of mercy is one of compassion and extends God’s healing. This is a much-needed gift in our world today. Suffering seems to be at an all-time high. Of all seven (7) gifts, it is my feeling that those with the gift of mercy require more attention to training than the other six (6) gifts. Even the manner in which mercy children are disciplined makes an impact in the development of their gift due to their deep feeling and tender-hearted nature.
Mercy children (and adults) are feeling people and can often feel the pain of others. Because of this uniquely powerful gift, these children need to learn how to discern relationships; when their gift is motivating them or when their emotions are.
Purpose of the Gift of Mercy
Romans 12:8 – The Holy spirit gives the spiritual gift of Mercy to some to love and assist those who are suffering, to walk with them until their burden is lifted. This gift is founded in God’s mercy towards us when we miss his highest plan for our loves, when suffering may be a consequence of our actions, and is consistently expressed with calculated compassion. The purpose is to identify with and comfort those who are in distress.
Mercy is one of the most misunderstood gifts. The Greek word for the spiritual gift of mercy is Eleeo. It means to be patient and compassionate toward those who are suffering or afflicted. Those with this gift are described as great empathizers for others in their trials and sufferings. They walk with people over extended periods of time and support them through their healing process.
These individuals are truly and literally the hands and feet of God to the afflicted. Those with this gift “weep with those who weep” Romans 12:15 and “bear one another’s burdens” Galatians 6:2. They are sensitive to the feelings and circumstances of others and can quickly discern when someone is not doing well. They are often described as good listeners and feel the need to simply “be there” for others.
As mercy children mature you may notice they have an ability to sense joy or distress and are attracted to people in trouble; often called “bleeding hearts”. They have a desire to remove hurt to bring healing, are highly sensitive to inconsiderate words and actions and are often closed to insincere and insensitive people. For those who are experiencing mental, emotional, and physical pain, God sends someone with the gift of mercy to support them. They might be described as “thin-skinned” or “weak” too because of their inability to stand up for themselves, often avoiding firmness until it is evident that it will bring healing. They are described as sympathetic and emotional, mirroring and meeting the same needs in others.
Challenges With the Gift of Mercy
Because it is difficult for a mercy person to speak firmly and give correction they may appear to be weak and indecisive. This is not the case. Their gift helps them discern wounds and potential causes, therefore they avoid language that may further harm.
They may appear to be guided by emotions rather than logic. This trait can be exhibited even before they gain the understanding of their gift.
The attraction to and understanding of those in distress may be misinterpreted by those of the opposite sex. This is a constant battle for the child—and the adult—with the gift of mercy. They need great insight into how to minister to the opposite sex.
They may appear to take up another’s offense because of their ability to interact with those who society may not be able to. A strong mercy gift (as an adult) has no problem supporting those who have been responsible for tragic forms of abuse and even criminal acts. Remember, Jesus came that all might have life, be forgiven, and ultimately restored to wholeness. The one with the gift of mercy understands this great love and its transformational power and ability.
Development of the Gift of Mercy
This gift requires a lot of family understanding and involvement because of the potential for others to abuse the person who exhibits the gift of mercy. There are many things you can do to support this child’s motivation.
Get to know those your child befriends by asking them to have dinner at your house, come to your house to play, etc. Show your child you are just as interested in their friend as they are and help them navigate issues they don’t recognize or understand.
Help them learn to discern when others might be taking advantage of their kindness and goodness towards them; how to use their gift without regard to reciprocal action.
Teach them to refrain from becoming a gossiper when they are around other mercy-showers. It’s easy for them to share stories about those who are not like them, or those they help.
Since mercy people are so very sensitive, pray about ways to help them keep from taking things personal. The goal is to protect the flow of their gift. They can easily clam up and keep feelings inside, therefore hampering the gift from flowing out to others. Prophecy children do the same.
Teach your mercy-shower how to release others’ problems. You can do this by praying with your child and help them discover how to turn their friend’s issues over to God. Left untrained, a mercy-person may destroy themselves due to their ability to empathize. They must have personal training on how to deal with it. They often burn out as adults.
Allow your child to become involved in or volunteer at a local homeless shelter or nursing home with your supervision.
Learn more about the gift of giving on the “About the Gifts” Page