God’s Love for Us — Forgiving Mercy
Though we have been trying to end each reflection on sinfulness with the reality of God’s mercy, during this week we will try to let God’s merciful forgiveness fill the background of our entire week.
We begin by focusing on God. The photo of a mother’s embrace of her daughter will inspire us throughout this week to keep our focus on God. This woman’s face will help us to begin to imagine the powerful depth of God’s embrace of us.
As I wake up, put on my slippers or robe each morning, and begin to get moving, I can focus, for a moment, on God’s delight in me. How God must rejoice in my coming to know how much I’m loved and forgiven! As I go through each day, I can recall various images that help my spirit soar with accepting the intimacy of forgiving love’s embrace.
I can imagine the joy I have experienced when a loved one’s biopsy came back negative, or when friends found the child they were waiting to adopt, or when someone I care deeply about receives my love and enjoys it. How much more God rejoices in us this week!
We resist the temptation to figure out how God could forgive our sins, our patterns — all we have done and all we have failed to do. The answer to that question is wrapped up in the mystery of love — love without condition or limit. We might imagine forgiving a spouse or child or someone we love simply because our love is so much greater and stronger than the wrong that was done. And we tell ourselves how much greater God’s love for me must be, to forgive me so freely, so completely!
There is a phrase we use to describe something so wonderful. We say, “It’s incredible; I can hardly believe it!” This week we enter into our desire to not only believe God’s forgiving mercy to me but also to experience it, accept it, and celebrate it. How much that must be God’s own desire for each of us this week!
Use the resources that follow to enrich the week’s retreat experience. You will find other resources on the Online Retreat Web site. Consider sharing the graces of this week there. We will never know how a gift given to us might truly help another.
Consider sharing the graces you have received
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Photos by Don Doll, S.J.
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