Tag Archives: forgiveness

Who am I

John Everett Millais (1829-1896)
The Pharisee and the Publican, 1864
The Tate

Jesus addressed this parable to those who were convinced of their own righteousness and despised everyone else.

What a hook! I want to find out if I am one of those to whom Jesus is addressing this parable.

And yes: often I am the self-righteous one who compares myself favorably to others and wonders why others don’t act, think, and speak as I do.

But now and again I become aware of my arrogance and face my failures, weaknesses, and woundedness. In these moments of truth, I dare to ask God’s mercy so that I may instead act, think, and speak with the mind and heart of Jesus Christ.

Follow the Way

For the whole law is fulfilled in one statement, namely,
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
Galatians 5:14

And another said, “I will follow you, Lord,
but first let me say farewell to my family at home.”Luke 9:61

What delays me from following the way of Jesus in welcoming, forgiving, loving,  showing compassion to, and living in peace with my neighbor?

Today I will practice awareness of the presence of the Lord in each moment.

Through the Holy Spirit

The Blue Marble
NASA/Apollo 17 crew; taken by either Harrison Schmitt or Ron Evans, December 7, 1972

We human persons are so small, frail, weak, and fragile. But filled with God’s Holy Spirit, we have the choice to be spacious in love, unbreakable in generosity, powerful in compassion, and invincible in forgiveness.

When I behold your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars which you set in place — What is man that you should be mindful of him, or the son of man that you should care for him? Psalm 8:4-5

Starting over

Rembrandt (1606-1669)
The Three Crosses
drypoint and burin on paper (III/IV), 1653
Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum

The other [criminal said], “We have been condemned justly, for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes, but this man has done nothing criminal.”
Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
He replied to him, “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” Luke 23:41-43

It is never too late to take responsibility for my actions, to turn to the Lord and ask for a chance to start again.

Listen

Resentment, fear, and the desire for retribution are heavy burdens. I would like to let them go, even though the pain of mistreatment goes deep.

Today I will hear and practice what the Lord asks of me: to love, bless, and pray for the people I consider my enemies and all those who have hurt me. Then may the burdens I carry be dissolved into the light of Love and Truth.

Jesus said to his disciples: “To you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,
bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” Luke 6:28

Richard Dadd (British, 1817 – 1886)
Mercy: David Spareth Saul’s Life
oil on canvas, 1854
Getty Center

Baptized into the community of love

We are called by our baptism to remember each member of our human family is beloved of God.

It is our lifework to offer compassion to the suffering, forgiveness to those who have hurt us, and comfort to those who are grieving and burdened with the stresses that arise in life.

Comfort, give comfort to my people, says your God. Isaiah 40:1

Where love and harmony make family

Holy Family

A worldwide human family that reflects love and harmony…

…is only possible if I open my heart today and treat myself and all people with compassion, kindness, gentleness, patience, and forgiveness. It is only possible when I stop comparing myself to others and follow the Way of unconditional love.

Put on, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another. Colossians 3:12-13a