What is Mercy?
Posted on August 4th, 2016

​Greetings From Capitol Hill,                                                                     July 2016
 
Mercy. What does that mean again? And why did John Hicks believe mercy was so central to the mission of Network?
 
In recent months I’ve been dwelling on the subject of mercy - attempting to wrap my mind around it for myself.
 
A few weeks back Lenny came into Network pitching a major fit claiming someone stole his bike and declaring, “I’m gonna kill whoever did this!”
 
I tried to console him, “Lenny, you’re a good man. You’re not gonna kill anyone today. Let’s talk this through.”
 
Lenny’s extra large hands gripped my shoulders as he pulled me close, looked me dead in my eyes and said, “Ryan, you’re wrong. I’m not a good man. If you only knew…” He proceeded to list off a colorful variety of corruptions and crimes in his life. I grimaced as I listened.
 
With all the courage I could muster I responded, “Lenny, I still believe you’re a good man – a child of God. I for one love you.”
 
Like a child, Lenny started sobbing and out poured more unfiltered honesty. His tears triggered my tears and his confessions compelled me to offer a few of my own. This went on long after the shift closed and our doors were locked.
 
Two rather large adult men sharing tears, honest words, and a brotherly embrace in the middle of a downtown Denver sidewalk…
Ok. I’m catching a glimpse of it. That’s it. That’s the holy ground of mercy.
 
Mercy comes from an ancient Old Testament word, hesed, which simply means God’s loving, loyal, compassion.
 
I suppose it’s nice to know the technical definition in my head, but what really greases the wheels of ministry is seeing mercy actively lived out among our beat down friends on the street and the remarkable staff and volunteers that keep showing up week after week after week.
 
All of you reading this letter have played a significant role in my development of mercy with your faithful presence and financial contributions. EVERYDAY God invites us to stand on the sidewalk with our honest reality – the tears, the joy, the brokenness and get consumed in the big loving embrace called Mercy.
 
One beggar to another,
 
Ryan Taylor    
                    


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1 Comments

Sandy Sanders - November 21st, 2016 at 2:05 PM
I would like to get in touch with John Hicks. 20 yrs ago, I volunteered Network every Tuesday Evening for about 2 years.. What BLESSINGS I received. How can I put this news letter on my facebook?
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