Home Lent – Day 18: How often must I forgive…?

Lent – Day 18: How often must I forgive…?

Matthew 18:21 – 25

To err is human and to forgive is divine. This thought is meant to show us the attractiveness of forgiveness as something godly and something we should aspire towards. It is not meant to be used as an excuse not to forgive because it is in the realm of the divine and we are merely human. I dare to say that forgiveness is human because it is at the heart of our humanity.  Whenever we err we turn to God asking for pardon and grace, and we abundantly receive mercy from God, because God knows us and God loves what He knows about us. He knows that even the man or woman or child that does bad things has a heart capable of the greatest good if given the chance. God knows and trusts that deep in the heart of every man, woman and children is a spark that can set the darkest world ablaze with love. God never gives up on us.  But do we give up on others and on ourselves because of what they have done to us and because of what we do. Have you given up on a friend, on a husband, on a wife, on a mother, on a Father, on a sister, on a brother, on a colleague, on a person or on yourself?  Whenever you give up on someone, something in you dies.

Today the Lord reminds us that there should be no limit on our forgiveness. Nothing should be unforgivable in our lives.  Let the hall of enemies in our hearts be empty, no matter how comfortable we have become with having this hall full of guests. It is possible and liberating to forgive no matter how hard it feels. Everyone deserves forgiveness. Everyone deserves another chance no matter what they have done. We forgive not because of what others have done to us. We forgive because of who we are. Evil wins whenever it steals our capacity or desire to forgive others and ourselves.

May God give us a forgiving heart today! May God bless you!

Author: Peter Chidolue, S.J.

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