Daily Thought For September 14, 2020

 Important Words on Forgiveness

How much suffering, how many wounds, how many wars could be avoided if forgiveness and mercy were the style of our life! Even in families, even in families. How many families are disunited, who do not know how to forgive each other. How many brothers and sisters bear resentment within. It is necessary to apply merciful love to all human relationships: between spouses, between parents and children, within our communities, in the Church, and also in society and politics.

Today as we were celebrating the Mass, I stopped; I was touched by a phrase in the first reading from the book of Wisdom. The phrase says, remember your end and stop hating. A beautiful phrase. But think of the end. Just think, you will be in a coffin… and will you take your hatred there? Think that in the end, you can stop hating and resenting. Let’s think of this phrase that is very touching. Remember your end and stop hating.

It is not easy to forgive because although in moments of calm we think “Yes, this person has done so many things to me but I have done many too. Better to forgive so as to be forgiven”, but then resentment returns like a bothersome fly in the summer that keeps coming back. Forgiveness isn’t something we do in a moment, it is something continuous, against that resentment, that hatred that keeps coming back. Let’s think of our end and stop hating.

Today’s parable helps us to grasp fully the meaning of that phrase we recite in the Lord’s Prayer: “And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us” (see Mt 6:12). These words contain a decisive truth. We cannot demand God’s forgiveness for ourselves if we in turn do not grant forgiveness to our neighbor. It is a condition. Think of your end, of God’s forgiveness, and stop hating. Reject resentment, that bothersome fly that keeps coming back. If we do not strive to forgive and to love, we will not be forgiven and loved either.

Let us entrust ourselves to the maternal intercession of the Mother of God: May she help us to realize how much we are in debt to God, and to remember that always, so that our hearts may be open to mercy and goodness.

Pope Francis - excerpt from Sunday Angelus (September 13, 2020)

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