Christ is Coming Soon; What Are We To Do Now?

It is not enough that we hang decorations, lights and pictures of Jesus this season, let us hang the virtues of Christ, chief among which are forgiveness and mercy. Putting up fancy lights is very expensive, not many can afford these beautiful lights but there is another light that cost nothing and is available for all; it is the light of good deeds.

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Do You Want to Follow Jesus? Then, Carry Your Cross

Forgiveness is one virtue that enables us to resemble Christ more. No matter what others may have done to us, no matter what they may have taken away from us, no matter what privileges they may have denied us, if we do not forgive, we are not yet Christians. We don’t forgive because the person who has offended us deserves it, we forgive because of our Faith in Christ Jesus who was able to forgive the very persons who executed Him on the Cross of Calvary. It does not make sense (humanly speaking) to forgive, but it takes a Christian to forgive. Remember, as Christians, we do not operate according to human wisdom, but Divine Wisdom.

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Forgiveness Sustains Marriage

Since there are no perfect humans, and Jesus is saying that divorce is not an option, how are couples to find joy in marriage? The answer is forgiveness. Forgive quickly. St. Paul would say: “Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil.” (Ephesians 4:26-27). If couples learn to forgive each other seventy times seven times, marriages would be blissful. Forgiveness sustains marriage.

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Forgiveness is Self-Healing

Unforgiveness is like holding hot coals in your bare hands hoping to throw them at your offenders. Once a snake brushed a saw in the farmer’s tool shed and in anger the snake rolled itself around the saw hoping to crush it but the snake ended up committing suicide. Unforgiveness is suicidal. On the other hand, forgiveness is self-healing. It is releasing a prisoner only to discover you are the prisoner.

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Why do You Think Evil in Your Hearts?

Jesus’ question to the Scribes and Pharisees is one that deserves some pondering. Jesus did not ask, “Why are you thinking I can’t forgive sins?” Instead, he asked: “Why do you think evil in your hearts?” Lack of Faith in God is itself a great evil we must tackle in our lives. To underestimate God or to belittle God’s power and authority is just as bad as any sin we can think of.

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Prayer Goes Beyond Words

Jesus shows us that even the very life we live is part of our prayer. After praying the words, we must follow our prayers with actions. If we refuse to forgive those who sin against us, then our pleas for God’s forgiveness are not complete.

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Being Merciful is Being Perfect

Our failure to forgive people puts a big question mark on our baptismal certificate. Our failure to be merciful to people as God was merciful to Ahab makes us no better than Jezebel. It is horrible for someone to kill another person (because of land or anything whatsoever) but it is even more horrible for a Christian to partake in jungle justice which has now become the order of the day today.

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A New Commandment: Love One Another As I Have Love You.

When Jesus was asked to summarize the ten commandments, He said: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbour as yourself.” (Luke 10:27, Cf. Matthew 22:37-40 & Mark 12:29-31). Take note, Jesus said, ‘love your neighbour as yourself’ but now Jesus is saying, ‘love one another as I have loved you.’ While the previous commandment depends on yourself, this new commandment is based on the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross for us. The newness of this commandment is that even if you don’t love yourself, you should try to love others by sacrificing for them.

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If You Really Love Me, Prepare to Suffer For Me

We cannot claim to love God if we are not willing to suffer even a single insult on behalf of God. We cannot claim to love God if we are not willing to abandon our dreams of becoming rich and wealthy in life to answer our calling. Of course, not all of us have been called by God to become ministers like Peter and the other apostles but each of us has been called to love God with all our minds, our hearts, and our strength.

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Peace, Forgiveness, Healing, and Revelation: Expressions of Divine Mercy.

When we go for confession, God so forgives our sins and washes us that we can confidently say we become new creatures. God does not remember our sins because the moment we offload them at the confessional, our old self dies and we leave as newborn babies. Just as you cannot accuse a newborn baby of sin, God no longer accuses us of the sins that we have dropped at the confessional. Never be too shy to go to confession; it is not the priest who forgives us but Jesus Christ himself who gave the priest the power to retain or absolve sins in His name.

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Neither Do I Condemn You, Go and Sin No More

Each of us has a past. You may see yourself as a desert, God is saying, I will make rivers flow from you. You may have gone deep in sin, yet God is saying: “my child, you can still be a Saint.” The God who called a murderer and changed his name from Saul to Paul is the same God we serve.

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Forgive: Do Not Keep Records of Past Offences

Peter’s question was with regard to a brother who admits his faults and comes begging for forgiveness. Jesus is teaching us today to always forgive, especially when the offender comes to beg for pardon. Honestly, forgiveness is one of the most difficult things to do even for a devoted Christian.

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