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May 30th
Home Sections The Daily B.R.E.A.D. Oct 7, 2009 - Wednesday Meditation (Forgive, Forgive and Forgive!!!)
Oct 7, 2009 - Wednesday Meditation (Forgive, Forgive and Forgive!!!) PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - The Daily B.R.E.A.D.
Saturday, 03 October 2009 15:18


F or forgiveness, which is almost another word for the Gospel, is a gift, a power, an answer to prayer. Ultimately, only God can forgive. We can forgive everything only by trusting in and living in God.


Our Lady of the Rosary

Jonah 4:1-11

Psalm 86:3-4, 5-6, 9-10

L uke 11:1-4  He was praying in a certain place, and when he ceased, one of his disciples said to him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples." (2) And he said to them, "When you pray, say: "Father, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. (3) Give us each day our daily bread; (4) and forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive every one who is indebted to us; and lead us not into temptation."



Meditation by Bert Thelen, S.J.

O ur first reading is the conclusion of the Book of Jonah.  Jonah is "angry enough to die" over the destruction of the plant that was protecting him from the sun (but really still angry that God had spared the city of Nineveh which Jonah had prophesied would be destroyed by God).  God is using a gourd plant to teach Jonah a lesson about Who God Is - Mercy Upon Mercy Upon Mercy.  Does Jonah get it?  We don't know because the story ends with God's words of universal concern.  So, the real point is, Do we get it?  Each of us has to decide for herself.  And that is our prayer today.  But I can at least offer some of the insights of God's Faithful over the years.


(1) Unlike us, God never acts out of anger or retaliation.  Actually, Jonah knows this.  He says the right words when he tells God why he fled: "I knew that you were a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger, rich in clemency, loathe to punish." But he doesn't really get it.  Do we? Do we really believe that, beyond our wildest dreams, despite our worst sins, we are loved with an extravagant love that is also eternal?


(2) Our anger, no matter how well justified, never serves our own well being (Jonah is dying from anger), the well being of others, or God's purposes. No wonder the wisdom of ages tells us, "Never let the sun go down on your anger!" I have also discovered over the years that an angry person cannot minister to others. He or she needs first to be healed (perhaps even to be exorcised) before being truly able to serve others in love-- which is always what Christ calls us to.


(3) Finally -- and our Gospel today gives us the clue when Jesus says, "Here is how to pray...we forgive all who do us wrong...."  we can only act this way (as God acts) when we are in a stance of prayer.  For forgiveness, which is almost another word for the Gospel, is a gift, a power, an answer to prayer.  Ultimately (which is why we shouldn't blame Jonah for his anger), only God can forgive.  We can forgive everything only by trusting in and living in God. And the Psalm for today, Psalm 86, is a beautiful prayer for this grace.




Supplementary Reading



What did we bring into the world? Nothing! What can we take out of the world? Nothing! – 1Timothy 6:7


I looked for a vacant table after I ordered my usual breakfast value meal and cup of coffee. As I placed the tray on the table, I noticed that a group of senior citizens in the next table were also enjoying their breakfast.

In between my sips of coffee and pancake bites, it was difficult not to hear their stories and laughter. Their combined voices seemed to come out of a booming speaker. I looked around for another vacant place to transfer but there was none. Little did I know that this moment would be a great source of learning.

They didn’t talk about fashion or compare the cars they were driving. They didn’t discuss what gadget was “hot” and how big their houses were. All they talked about was their old adventures together and how their former classmates were doing. They exchanged stories about their grand kids. They also discussed how they spent the previous day and their plans for today. It was obvious how much fun they were having. They had what probably most rich people would pay for — happy relationships!

We came in this world because of love and it’s the only thing we can bring when we leave this world. Alvin fabella



Take time to evaluate your priorities. What is consuming much of your time and resources? Is love a part of your priorities?

Lord, teach me to love others more as You continue to love me. Amen.



For meditation/readings of the previous days/months , please click any of the following links:

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