Scripture Reading: Genesis. 42:1
I have heard people say, “Even if I have to die, I will not forgive him”. In this regard there is the story of a Pastor who once told a friend that the possibility of ever forgiving another Pastor was foreclosed since he was prepared to go to hell rather than forgive. When such becomes the story of our lives, we must remember that there is corn even in Egypt. That man whom we have declared to be a life-long enemy, that woman whom we have vowed never to relate with may turn out to be our place of last resort. The truth is that our enemies are those whom we have declared as such. Yet God may sometimes put us at the mercy of such self-pronounced enemies to be sources of blessings to us; the mysterious God may decide to make such self-declared enemies a solution to our life-long problems. God can choose to bless us through whatever means even through the hands of our foes. When this happens, only an upright man can receive and key into such blessings
Dear friends, Egypt was the place of solace for hungry Israel; Israel got corn from Egypt one of its greatest woes. I pray, may your enemies, from this day onwards, be channels of blessings to you in Jesus name. Amen. But you cannot enjoy such blessings when you are not at peace with such so-called enemies. Why hedge yourself around with numerous enemies? Why do we find it difficult to relate with those in our neighborhood due to hatred, bitterness and malice? Why is forgiveness impossibility to us? Why do we overburden ourselves with malice and anger when we can still achieve something good from God through the hands of these persons we have locked out of our lives? There is a positive side to every Egypt; it is not all ill with your self-acclaimed foes. We can always extend hands of forgiveness to all those we have shut out of God’s mercy and ours. The blessings we missed out the previous year can still be ours this year if we learn to forgive and cultivate a peaceful and serene attitude. This is what the author of the letter to the Hebrews meant when he admonished that we, “pursue peace with all men.” Heb. 12:14. In malice, hatred and strife, this Pauline injunction will be impossibility. On the contrary, we lose the inner stability of our soul.
St. Augustine of Hippo concludes today’s reflection this way, “There are many kinds of alms, the giving of which helps us to obtain pardon for our sins; but none is greater than that by which we forgive from our heart a sin that someone committed against us”
MASS: GREEN Sir 6: 5-17; Ps 119: 12. 16. 18. 27. 34. 35; Mk 10: 1-12
- Lord, I release forgiveness on all those who have offended me
- Considering the words of George Herbert, that “He who cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself”, I beseech you, give me the grace to forgive from the heart in Jesus name.
- Pray for all those who find it difficult to forgive themselves, God and their neighbors
- Pray for the spirit of forgiveness to reign in the church of God
- Lord, set me free from the spirit of anger and bitterness
EXERCISE: Go to that person you have sworn never to forgive and reconcile with him or her.
Meditation: Romans 12:10