Grace and Mercy From A Water Spout

Have you ever noticed the settings on a water spout? This summer in Central Texas has reacquainted me with the choices on mine. When I am watering my plants with a handheld hose, I can choose these settings: Soaker, Mist, Jet, Shower, Flat, Center and Cone.

Soaker is the one I use when I want to drench a single plant.

Mist is when I want a light coat on the plant.

Jet is the one to use when I want to wash dirt off my porch.

Shower does a nice job of covering a certain area evenly.

Flat is a center line directed at one area.

Center setting sprays from a central location to a perfect circle.

Cone is a perfect circle outline to focus on root penetration.

After a particularly eventful and spectacularly stressful week, I found myself thinking of those seven settings and God’s capacity for Grace (the free and unmerited favor of God) and Mercy (compassion and forgiveness offered when one could offer punishment instead). I mean the God I believe in – the one true God of Abraham and Issac and Father in the trinity of Father-Son-Holy Spirit – can offer His children many things. Why couldn’t He offer us what we need the most (Grace and Mercy) in a variety of ways?

So, I think in terms of Grace and Mercy, I find these to be true:

Soaker is when life’s trial and temptations beat me down. His soaks me with His tender Mercy and unlimited Grace.

Mist finds me when I practice His presence (such as a daily devotion) and bask in His love for me.

Jet is after I faced the fire of discipline or pruning of His hand and after need His unfailing steadfastness.

Shower is when I see God working amongst His church working on a common goal.

Flat is when God asks me to focus on one area of ministry or offer up an area of my life for His inspection.

Center is what I project when people see Grace and Mercy through me because I am acting as God’s vessel not selfishly.

Cone are the times that God asks me to focus inwardly on my heart attitude because all things flow from there.

We have just completed the first two weeks of school.  THEY WERE HARD, and I don’t see them getting easier for several weeks.  God nudged me more than once also to offer these to my children as we struggled through these changes.  He also nudged me to offer these to myself.  God is also asking me not to compare where I am in my walk in Mercy and Grace with anyone else.  He encourages me to offer Mercy and Grace to others as our lives intersect.  My job is to respond how God wishes me to respond; He is teaching me that it is not to DECIDE what form of Mercy and Grace I should offer.

My parting thought for now reminds me of Dr. Suess’ story of the Lorax.  The man created a THNEED – a creation that could be anything you want or need it to be.  God has His own THNEED – Grace and Mercy.  The perfect gift for every wearer or user.  It is always the right size, the right fit at the right time.


  1. Nita Bynum | 13th Jul 17

    Thank you. You expressed it better than I have.

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