Commentary on the Gospel of
The Lord truly is kind and merciful.
The Parable of the Lost Son may have its foundation in the first reading from Micah and this reading tells us much about the true power of our God, “Who does not persist in anger forever, but delights rather in clemency, and will again have compassion on us, treading underfoot our guilt.” Unfortunately this is just the opposite of what our world had become. Today it seems we live in a world of persistent anger and a world where the violence you inflict upon your neighbor is the true measure of your power.
As much as we detest this eye for an eye mentality that the leaders of so many countries and organizations continue to follow are we just as guilty? Not on the global scale that leads the 6 o’clock news but in our own personal lives and in our daily interactions with those around us? Do we find joy in forgiving others for their sleights against us? Do we graciously accept their apologies? Or, do we revel in our self-perceived power over the one on bended knee or in our ability to get our “just due” from someone we feel has wronged us? If we follow this later course, who then are we to criticize the actions of the worlds’ leaders for their continued use of violence and their unwillingness to forgive? Are they not just like us?
Now that we are well along on our Lenten journey we should continue to challenge ourselves to find the courage and strength to forgive others. To have compassion like that of the father in the Parable of the Lost Son who was willing to forgive his spendthrift son for his transgressions; even though his forgiveness was not viewed kindly by his other son. And so too might our acts of forgiveness and kindness be talked about behind our back and viewed as a sign of weakness by our friends and work colleagues.
But remember we are forgiving others because we too want to be forgiven and because it is what God would want us to do. If our goal is to live a more Christ like life then practicing the act of forgiveness is the perfect place to start and Lent is the perfect time to start.