I’m going to jump back into the Year of Mercy today. “Admonish Sinners” can be a bit tricky. Aren’t we told not to judge, and to remove the log from our own eye before worrying about the speck in someone else’s? So how is this an act of mercy, and how do we do it? I think the mercy is pretty obvious. If someone is in the midst of sin, they are harming themselves, and their relationship with God. To help them fix that is a blessing. But, then there’s the practical, and I think this is where the act of mercy lies. There are times someone needs to hear it straight up and without apology. There are times when someone needs to be prodded and gently led. There are times when we need to walk alongside someone and help steer their path in another direction. If you don’t know this person well enough to know which of these they need, you don’t know them enough to admonish them. The solution isn’t to give up, but it may just be to get to know them better. Mercy always comes from a heart of love. Mercy comes from the place of a father waiting for his prodigal son. Mercy comes from a place of hope and grace. If the admonishment is coming from somewhere else, it shouldn’t come at all.