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The Story of Mercy: Ann's Challenge

Updated on October 27, 2014

The Story of Mercy

The last of the sun’s rays sparkle upon the water and lead to the lone figure at the water’s edge, as though nature itself wished to spotlight the young woman. Her face is bathed in gold, and worry creases her brow and gives her the appearance of one much older than her seventeen years.

Even though she is young, there is wisdom in that face, a wisdom born from experience. Her childhood was not easy, no walk in the park, giggling over nonsense, whiling away the hours in frivolous pursuits childhood, but rather a childhood of seriousness, of heartbreaks, of loneliness and disappointments.

But she is not bitter. Strangers pass her in the street and marvel at her gentle smile, the way her mouth gives just a hint of amusement, while her eyes embrace those she meets. Hers is a welcoming smile, a glad-to-know you smile, a life-is-better-for-knowing-you smile, and even on the coldest of days she brings warmth to those in her proximity.

Her name is Mercy and this is her story.

Mercy
Mercy | Source
Mercy was left on this doorstep as a baby
Mercy was left on this doorstep as a baby | Source

The Beginning

Where mercy, love, and pity dwell, there God is dwelling too.
William Blake

Mercy has never known her parents. She was discarded, literally, left on a doorstep at three days of age, screaming for the world to notice, take notice, please God will someone notice. From that doorstep she entered the system, one foster home, two foster homes, thirteen, twenty, shuttled to and fro, always a reason for rejection, too rambunctious, too needy, too ill, too distracted, too sad, too…….

She was a frail child, a brittle little tyke who never met a tree she wouldn’t climb, or an accident that didn’t call her name. Bumps and bruises, breaks and splints, a walking, talking example of all that can go wrong in childhood, and yet she smiled, and her smile was welcomed by the doctors and nurses who treated her, and the supervisors who watched over her, and thousands of others who came in contact with this smiling accident waiting to happen.

Yes indeed, left on a doorstep, a note pinned to her pink flannel pajamas that simply said, “This is my child, Mercy. Please take care of her and love her. She deserves so much more than I can give her.” And the supervisors did their best, hugging her late into the night, kissing away her tears, but in truth, Mercy often was the comforter rather than the comforted, always asking how are you, what can I do for you, what is wrong with you, while smiling that smile that would become her trademark, the smile of Mercy.

As She Grew Older

She heard the whispers when they thought she was not nearby. Poor dear, what are we to do about her, how can such a lovely child be alone this long, what will ever become of her, and she appreciated their concern, but she knew all was well in her heart, that her purpose would be one day known, and she set about showing everyone that a little Mercy could achieve great things.

It became her habit to walk to the beach each evening after dinner. There she could be found, in rain, in snow, and golden sunshine, the waves lapping at her feet, her gaze fixed upon the horizon, a part of the natural order of life she thought, a part of every living being. She felt a million heartbeats inside her chest, the intake of the life-giving source, and there she found the peace that fed her soul.

One night, upon returning to the home, her foster mother asked her if she ever grew tired of being a source of inspiration for others. “Surely,” she said, “you must think of your needs from time to time, and you must want for more than you have.” And Mercy just shook her head, smiled, and responded, “I have been given all I need, thank you. I am here for a reason, and it is not my job to question that reason. There are so many who have had horrible lives, so many who are lacking in the basic elements of life. My name is Mercy, and mercy I shall give.”

And Older Still

And word spread throughout the land, that somewhere, nearby, a most extraordinary child lived, a child named Mercy, a child who looked at all as equals, and gave generously of her time and love. Many considered her to be a myth, for how could there truly be a child of such compassion, while others believed with ever fiber of their being that she did, indeed, exist.

Still others, the lucky ones, actually met Mercy during their daily travels, and without knowing her name upon sighting her, they knew this was the child spoken about. And after meeting her, and sharing in conversation with her, they vowed to lead better lives, lives of dedication, or deeper meaning and purpose.

Sightings continued, and it became common knowledge that Mercy could be found each evening by the water’s edge, gaining strength and understanding from the tides, experiencing the swell of the sea deep within her, and they came to learn of her secrets.

One night a crowd had formed along the beach, awaiting the return of Mercy. When she appeared the murmuring stopped, and all eyes fell upon the golden-haired symbol they had come to believe in. A woman stepped forward and addressed the teen.

“Mercy, teach us so that we may be like you. Tell us what we are lacking so that we will experience the joy you so obviously know.”

And Mercy walked to the center of the crowd and once again smiled. “That which you seek you already have. One cannot give a gift that is already owned. Look within your hearts and you will find it. Now go, go about your lives, and remember the message of Mercy you learned here today.”

The sun sets on the world of Mercy
The sun sets on the world of Mercy | Source

And so It Shall Be

Wherever one man helps another, there will be Mercy. Wherever a wrong is righted, a wound healed, and a tear dried, there will be Mercy.

Mercy is in the gentle touch of a nurse and the strong hands of a rescuer. Mercy is in the gentle kiss of a caregiver and the wisdom of a teacher. Mercy costs little and yet is priceless, and wherever Mercy is found, there is love, for one cannot exist without the other.

The last of the sun’s rays sparkle upon the water and lead to the lone figure at the water’s edge, as though nature itself wished to spotlight the young woman. Her face is bathed in gold, and worry creases her brow and gives her the appearance of one much older than her seventeen years. Her concerns are many, for there is still much to do, and she is only one young woman, but then the sky’s blues turn to golds and purples, the sea meets the horizon and becomes one with it, and her concerns are carried off on the wings of a bird.

Author’s note: this story was in response to a challenge issued by my friend Ann. You can find her challenge by following this link. Thank you, Ann, for the inspiration.

2014 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

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    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very true, Deb, and I think you for the clarity of statement.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      And with Mercy and all good things, comes life...

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Maria, thank you for your kind words. Obviously, this message is an important one to me.

    • write-with-coffee profile image

      Maria K 

      4 years ago from Bangalore

      This is a beautiful story, Bill. It reminded me of a verse:

      "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love," 1 Cor 13:13

      As long as there is love and mercy in this world, we'll all do just fine :)

      Maria.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kevin, thank you so much for the kind words. Oh, if we only had a little more mercy in this world. :)

    • The Examiner-1 profile image

      The Examiner-1 

      4 years ago

      That was beautiful Billy, it was so touching and so true. It does happen but not enough these days. If only more people were like that instead of the ways that so many are, it would be a more of a peaceful world. I voted this up+++, shared it and pinned, tweeted and G+ it.

      Kevin

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Jo! This was a special challenge by a special friend, and Mercy just flowed naturally for me. I have the feeling we will be hearing more from Mercy.

      blessings always

      bill

    • Jo_Goldsmith11 profile image

      Jo_Goldsmith11 

      4 years ago

      I am so moved. Shared, up and face book 2x. On my personal page and then the Project Good Words page. Blessings to you good man!

      Just Amazing! Beautifully written. Please pass the tissues~

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Rolly. Coming from a wordsmith such as yourself, that is a huge compliment and I am grateful. Have a great Sunday up north my friend.

    • Rolly A Chabot profile image

      Rolly A Chabot 

      4 years ago from Alberta Canada

      Another great write here Bill and a reminder of just how truly blessed we are. Thanks for sharing with us, the ink which flows from a well handled pen is the example of your words...

      Hugs and blessings

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michael my friend, alas, I am intimate with the word of the Bible, having studied at one time to be a priest. It is our secret. :) The message is timeless and spans all cultures and religions....show mercy...show love....show compassion...and treat others as you would like to be treated. :)

      blessings always my friend

      bill

    • Michael-Milec profile image

      Michael-Milec 

      4 years ago

      Hello Bill. Well, there is this second to none writer and his name is William D. Holland whose articles are filled with the true facts of the living right, desirable to be read second time just in case I have missed something. Is any other way to portrait Mercy better than the heart of the heavenly Father puts it in your pen? My desire would be that rest of the "sermons" would sound so strongly based upon the words of the Creator Incarnate " Go and learn what this saying means: ' I want mercy and not sacrifice.' " Almost paradoxically sounds to me your saying"I am not intimate wit the Bible," while carrying its message is masterly portraying in this article that of more meaningful is to share with our fellowmen what is in our hearts passionately then just performing religiously less impressive ceremonial duties...

      As we go on in our daily business, our mercy would not only benefit to those who are in misery since blessing of the merciful multiplies, coming back to us.

      Voting across but funny.

      Have a blessed writing my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...I know better, Paula!

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      It better not come "Postage Due."

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Okay, Sis, your check is in the mail. Enough, please! :) Seriously, I need you as my agent....we could both make millions with you guiding the way. Thank you my dear friend. You brought a smile to my face this afternoon, and for that I really am grateful.

      bill

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 

      4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      my God, Bill......You are truly TRULY "Blessed" in every sense of that word. Your gift is a reader's good fortune. I sincerely feel favored to be one of the "millions," who very soon, will hold your works of literary genius in their hands.

      You stun and dazzle.....just like a precious jewel........UP AWESOME & BEAUTIFUL to say the least. pin-tweet-google.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Jamie. I enjoyed writing this story, as you can imagine I'm sure.

    • jhamann profile image

      Jamie Lee Hamann 

      4 years ago from Reno NV

      Thank you sharing your story of Mercy. You have taken the challenge head on and created a wonderful story. Jamie

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Harishprasad...we can only hope that others will allow mercy to flow through their veins.

    • Harishprasad profile image

      Harish Mamgain 

      4 years ago from New Delhi , India

      There is mercy already in all of us --in our eyes, mind and heart but the only difference is that only a handful of us take it out in the streets to the doorstep of needy. The Story of Mercy is really a story for the whole humanity. Bill, you met Ann's challenge so well. Voted up and shared.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you SherriDW....Mercy is special indeed my friend.

    • SherriDW profile image

      SherriDW 

      4 years ago

      Thank you for letting us walk in Mercy's shoes if even for a moment in time.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, vkwok!

    • vkwok profile image

      Victor W. Kwok 

      4 years ago from Hawaii

      The whole world could use someone like Mercy. Thanks for sharing this stunning story.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Vellur. Touching hearts is important to me.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      4 years ago from Dubai

      Great story, touched my heart. Mercy drew me into the story and beyond. You have woven a spell with this hub, voted up and spellbound.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Savvy, you said it all perfectly. Thank you for visiting me. I'll be by shortly to see what you've been up to lately.

    • savvydating profile image

      Yves 

      4 years ago

      An excellent reminder to be Mercy, instead of waiting for her to come to us. We really are blessed when we give of our time, and kindness has a ripple effect which makes its' way back to our hearts as quickly as it is shared. Beautifully done, Bill.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Faith, spending time with those grandchildren is a gift not to be missed. Enjoy your time with them, and thank you for spending a little Saturday time with me.

      Have a wonderful weekend and blessings always.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DDE, thank you for your kind words. I greatly appreciate you.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      4 years ago from southern USA

      Beautiful, poignant and powerful message here in response to Ann's challenge! Mercy is a beautiful word and even more powerful when put into action. I love this character. All need mercy shown to us in this life, for we all have been in such a place that may have not been too lovely and mercy is a beautiful gift to share.

      I have loved reading all of the responses to Ann's challenge. I hope to submit a response too. All three grands have been up since late Thursday afternoon, so I am overwhelmed with joy at the moment and giving them my attention. That is why I am behind in my commenting.

      Really enjoyed reading this piece this morning.

      Hugs, peace and mercy to you and yours today and always.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Bravely approached! Always so talented!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genna, thank you so much. i write something like this and I just know this is what I was meant to do....now if I can only make some money doing it, I'll be the ultimate winner. LOL Seriously, topics like this are important to me; this is where my passion comes from.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rhonda, this is the stuff that moves me as a writer. I do a bunch of stuff that moves me not at all, but this is how I keep my passion for writing. I'm so glad you liked it and yes, it is sad. Thank you and blessings always to you and yours.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      I just read about this Ann’s challenge today, being a bit behind with comments. What a great Friday evening this has been, reading all of these talented and diverse perspectives. I am now spoiled – I don’t want this challenge to end. “Mercy” is well named in your story…a superb metaphor. “She felt a million heartbeats inside her chest, the intake of the life-giving source, and there she found the peace that fed her soul.” (This is exactly how I feel about the ocean.) Such excellent writing that enfolds the soul and holds it, with sadness, hope and inspiration. This is breathtaking. Thank you!

    • Rhonda Lytle profile image

      Rhonda Lytle 

      4 years ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

      What a sadly beautiful story. Would that we all gave what we already have. I leave here somewhat saddened thinking of all the children with no one to love them yet with hope that somehow, some of them emerge through the torture of childhood with no love still knowing how to give it. God bless!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Will. Coming from a wordsmith like you, that is quite a compliment.

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 

      4 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Wow! You and John Hansen have produced a couple of real gems. Up and awesome, Bill.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Zulma, thank you for the laugh. Like you, I now really enjoy poetry, because I now know how difficult it is. I have no problem with not being able to write it...we can't all be poets and I'm fine with that. :)

      Oh yeah, thank you! LOL Have a great weekend my friend.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 

      4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Join the club, Bill. I totally suck at poetry. I've tried and I just can't get my head around it. It has, however, given me an appreciation for those who can. To me, it's genius.

      Oh yeah, and this article is useful; honest, concise and practical.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I actually wrote one once on HP, and my friends were very kind in their praise, but to me, that's kind of like parents who tell their five year old that they can do anything. LOL Maybe one day I'll try it again.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 

      4 years ago

      Giving it a try might be fun!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Breakfastpop, that's an easy one to answer: poetry! No way, no how...can't do it. :) But thank you for the very generous praise.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you, Kim! Encouragement like that is what every writer needs.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Alicia. I'm kind of fond of those two girls.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 

      4 years ago

      Such a beautiful story, Bill. I wonder, is there anything you can't do? Voted up, beautiful and awesome!

    • klidstone1970 profile image

      இڿڰۣ-- кιмвєяℓєу 

      4 years ago from Niagara Region, Canada

      A beautiful story, Bill. It's refreshing to have wonderful characters wise beyond their years. If there is indeed a continuation of this, you will make many of us quite happy. Looking forward to more. Kindest wishes, Kim.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is a lovely story, Bill. Like Hope, Mercy is a beautiful and inspiring character.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Nadine. Hopefully one day I'll be able to make money doing this. :) I appreciate your support and kind words.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you sincerely, Bill. That means the world to me, buddy.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 

      4 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      I fell in love with Mercy. I know in my heart that all the people who have commented before me, and who will leave a comment after, they all have a Mercy within them. You are a great story writer.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 

      4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Bill. What beautiful writing. You really do have a gift and thankfully you are following your passion so we can all enjoy the result. Great job my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very true, Jackie, but when we meet them, what an honor it is. :) Thank you, friend, and Happy Thursday to you.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 

      4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Beautiful heartwarming story. There are a few like Mercy we have all met but few and far between. ^+

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Aww, Ruby, I was hoping you'd be by. Thank you my inspiration.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you manatita....I'm so glad others enjoyed the message here.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, Jo. It was a joy to write as well my friend.

      Happy Thursday to you, and I hope your Friday is rewarding as well.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      4 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Bill, I love your story, so beautifully written, your words flow so effortlessly. What more could I say? Awesome my friend...

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 

      4 years ago from london

      Beautifully crafted. Increasingly powerful towards the end. Great message and great name. Excellent Hub.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 

      4 years ago from Lincolnshire, U.K

      Bill, you always rise to the occasion and this is no exception. Beautifully done. This goes well with your writing about "Hope," a joy to read.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sheila, coming from an author such as yourself, I consider that high praise. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Barbara Kay. I think we need more of these messages, don't you? :)

    • profile image

      sheilamyers 

      4 years ago

      I love the way you paint a picture with your words.

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Badder 

      4 years ago from USA

      This is a beautiful story with an inspiring message. Thanks Bill.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Iris, you are very kind. Thank you my friend, and Happy Thursday to you.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, Lisa! I'm touched by your comment.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Marlene! I really do appreciate that.

    • Iris Draak profile image

      Cristen Iris 

      4 years ago from Boise, Idaho

      This is beautiful writing and inspirational, both of which I have come to expect from you. I am not disappointed.

    • lisavanvorst profile image

      Lisa VanVorst 

      4 years ago from New Jersey

      This was a remarkable and beautiful hub.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you jptanabe..much-appreciated.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 

      4 years ago from USA

      Bill, this is beautiful!

    • jptanabe profile image

      Jennifer P Tanabe 

      4 years ago from Red Hook, NY

      Awesome! Very moving little story. Loved every word!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eric, I consider that a huge compliment. Thank you my friend.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Danged word count. I could have read on for another 10,000 words.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Zulma, I suspect that Hope and Mercy will meet one day. I think, at this point, it is expected. :) My readers are way ahead of me, which is no surprise. LOL Thank you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Carol....maybe a short story...not sure about a novel. :) But your kind support is appreciated always.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 

      4 years ago from United Kingdom

      She sounds like she could be Hope's sister. I thought she was until I read about the challenge. Surely there is room for Mercy in Hope's family.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, some topics are much easier to write, and there are days i struggle like crazy...this one came easily because of the topic. :)

      Thank you again

      bill

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Cam, you are very welcome. Thank you very much, buddy!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Frank, there are days when it does seem easy. Most days, though, I struggle for the right words just like everyone else. Thank you for your kind words.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      4 years ago from Arizona

      As always well done. You can take any word and create a novel.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      John, are you reading my mind or what? Stop that, you'll give away the plot. :) Thank you my friend.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      4 years ago from SW England

      Frank's right; you do make it seem soooo easy!

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 

      4 years ago from Lowell, MA through the end of May, 2019.

      Bill, thanks for blessing us with an upbeat story that leaves us with warm hearts. Beautifully written. Thanks for sharing with us.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      4 years ago from Shelton

      wow, man this was simply off the chain...very good hub and i bet u tackled the challenge with ease

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      4 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Well done Bill. I knew if you responded to one of these challenges it would be something special, and it was. Hope, Mercy...I look forward to meeting Grace next :)

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, me thinks there might be a reason why those two girls are so similar. In fact, I am betting on it in the future. :) How's that for a cryptic message?

      Thanks my dear.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      :) Seriously, Ann, have a marvelous trip. I would love to see the Louvre one day.

      bill

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      4 years ago from Central Florida

      I had much the same takeaway as Ann. Mercy could be Hope's sister, spreading good in the world and showing others the beauty and peace that resides in all of us.

      Nice story, Bill!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      4 years ago from SW England

      Ha, Ha! :D

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Yes, Ann, you poor thing. You must be exhausted. LOL

      bill

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, thank you my friend. Perhaps one of these days, Hope and Mercy will meet each other, and wouldn't that be a wonderful thing? :)

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      4 years ago from SW England

      Aaah, I'm honoured that you responded to this; you're always so supportive and I thank you with all my heart.

      Glad you still like me, regardless of the Paris stab! You'll be pleased to hear it's my last trip anywhere for a while - I need a rest!

      Ann

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      I've been sitting here trying to figure out just what to say. Yes, your Hope series comes to mind because it is in the same vein, but with the Mercy we all need! What a beautiful tribute to that mercy that lies within if we only give it a chance. Well done my friend.

      Voted up, awesome, beautiful, and interesting.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, Janine! You are sweet and I mean that sincerely.

      bill

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, I'm so happy that you enjoyed this. I usually don't take on these challenges, but you are a friend and I wanted to support you....so it was special to me because you are. :)

      And then you stab me in the back with the Paris reference. Well, I still like you. LOL

      Have a wonderful trip, Ann.

      bill

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 

      4 years ago from New York, New York

      Aww, quite beautiful how you answered Ann's challenge and think we would all be grateful to meet a bit of Mercy at times. Happy Thursday Bill!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      MizB, you are a smart woman. I always try to steer clear of the religious zealots. LOL Thank you....even as a little kid I loved parables, which is a bit of a surprise since I am not intimate with the Bible. :)

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      4 years ago from SW England

      This is truly awesome and that's not a word I use often. Breathtaking. It's also a lovely extension of your 'Hope' series. I love the intro and the way you come back round to it at the end and I love the idea of the sun spotlighting the figure on the shore.

      Thank you so much for responding to my challenge, bill. It was certainly worth the wait. I can't find words to say how it's grabbed me. You have such a power with words.

      Thanks too for providing a link to my hub. I'm off to add this to the links of the other contributors.

      You never cease to amaze me, bill!

      Have a great Thursday and a wonderful weekend. Don't want to make you jealous but I'm off to Paris tomorrow for a cultural weekend at the Louvre and the Musée d'Orsay. A bientôt!

      Ann

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James MizBejabbers 

      4 years ago from Beautiful South

      That is so beautiful, Bill. You met the challenge very well, in fact, exceeded it. This is a great parable and one in which a modern-day lesson can be learned. I believe that this is what Jesus taught when he said the church was in the heart, not in the building. I could say more, but I don't want to rile a bunch of Bible thumpers. Voted you up and beautiful.

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