Daily Reflection
March 5th, 2005

Joan Lanahan

Chaplain, SPAHP, Occupational and Physical Therapy Programs
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Hosea 6:1-6
Psalm 51:3-4, 18-19, 20-21ab
Luke 18:9-14


“Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” I remember this line from my teen years. If this were true, there wouldn’t be a need for “Forgive Me” cards. The Pharisee would be the man of the house and Luke’s Publican, or tax collector, would be the fool. In God’s eyes, the humble one who is honest is welcomed rather than the self-righteous.

How can we truly know God’s love unless we need God’s love? We all have times when we realize we’re in need of God’s saving grace. When we’re caught in a compulsion and recognize we’re hurting ourselves or loved ones, we cry out, “Lord deliver me.”

A friend described her visit to a prisoner on death row. He’s a young man who killed another during a robbery. Now, in prison, judged by a jury, and waiting to die, he says, “I’m so grateful to God for taking me out of my past life.” He admits his wrong action, accepts that he’ll die, and believes in God’s forgiveness and mercy.

Remembering our sinful moments – hurting others by our actions or words or hurting ourselves when negating our good moments, we cry out, “Lord forgive me.” Are we any different from the Publican? I hope not. He’s the honest one who trusts God’s love. God’s loving embrace welcomes us when we voice our remorse and need for forgiveness.

I hope we’re different from the Pharisee!
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