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Tell It Slant – Conduits of Mercy

Matthew 18:21-35, NRSV

Reflections

Maybe retaliation or holding onto anger about the harm done to me doesn’t actually combat evil. Maybe it feeds it. Because in the end, if we’re not careful, we can actually absorb the worst of our enemy, and at some level, start to become them. So what if forgiveness, rather than being a pansy way to say, ‘It’s okay,’ is actually a way of wielding bolt-cutters, and snapping the chains that link us? What if it’s saying, ‘What you did was so not okay, I refuse to be connected to it anymore.’? Forgiveness is about being a freedom fighter. And free people are dangerous people. Free people aren’t controlled by the past. Free people laugh more than others. Free people see beauty where others do not. Free people are not easily offended. Free people are unafraid to speak truth to stupid. Free people are not chained to resentments. And that’s worth fighting for.

— Nadia Bolz-Weber

  • forgiveness is essential, for the good of the soul
  • we keep those we don’t forgive as prisoner in our “dungeon”
  • There comes a point at which you have to let go and forgive. You can start your prayer with, “Help me to forgive because I don’t want to forgive. I feel entitled to be angry even though the anger is killing me, not them. And no one really cares that I’m angry. It’s destroying my life, not theirs. I want to punish some-one,. I punish my kids or I punish other innocent people who have never harmed me because it is my way of punishing them. So I really don’t want to forgive because then I think all my hurt will be forgotten and that feels so unfair. But who is fair? No one’s hurt is fair. I just think that justice should revolve around me. So, help me to forgive, one person at a time, beginning with-.. That’s your beginning. You take it from there until you have emptied your dungeon. Whenever you add new prisoners, you will have to revisit your dungeon. — Caroline M. Myss, Entering the Castle: An Inner Path to God and Your Soul
  • forgiveness requires fuel
  • A lifetime of received forgiveness allows us to become mercy: That’s the Beatitude. We become what we receive, what we allow into our hearts. Mercy becomes our energy and purpose. Perhaps we are finally enlightened and free when we can both receive it and give it away—without payment or punishment. — Richard Rohr CAC Daily Meditations 2018-02-04

 

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