I have been adrift in a stormy sea this week; calling out to the Savior for His help in distress. The days have been dark. My husband and I sought Him at our Lighthouse today.
My family has been torn apart. No one knows when we will be reunited. Personally, I cannot see how we will be reconciled. It will take a miracle. I could blame it on the virus crisis, the disease of addiction, or the state of our political system right now. But I know in my heart these are only excuses. This is a storm that most families walk through at some point in their history. And I know only God can handle this one.
I cannot go into details lest I am rendered unable to finish this post. It is hard to focus on the light from our little candle instead of the black storm clouds and devastating lighting overhead. With my rosary in hand, I began to pray.
Yesterday I went to confession and spoke to one of my favorite priests. He gave me a simple penance. It was also one of the hardest I have ever done. I had the standard ten Hail Mary’s. Those were easy. It was the one thing I had to ask God to give me that was the hardest. Just thinking about this request brings tears to my eyes right now. This request is hard to write and even harder for me to pray; “Holy Father, grant me your grace to forgive…”
After the Hail Mary’s I knelt at the feet of Jesus for a long time trying to whisper the words. The insults hurled at me raced through my head. Two years of lying, doctors, emergency rooms, and meetings swirled in my memories. The brokenness in my family weighed on my heart. Finally, I could whisper; “Holy Father, thank you for forgiving me. Please grant me the grace to forgive…”
My home is peaceful now and I can rest better. I am healing from spiritual wounds and I find this prayer for God’s Grace on my lips. The prayer will be with me for a lifetime.
The Lord’s Prayer states: “Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” Since it is my habit to say a rosary every day, I repeat this phrase automatically at least six times a day. The request will mean a lot more to me now. I may even stumble on the words as I pray my rosary. Funny, at the Lighthouse this morning, the Priest called us to pray the Rosary every day. It reminded me to forgive in my soul as well as in my head.
As Catholics we pray the Our Father a lot. We don’t think about it much, but the prayer our Lord Jesus gave us reminds us to forgive daily. It is right there in the statement about our daily bread in Mathew 6:7-15. Jesus taught:
7 “In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words. 8 Do not be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
The Lord’s Prayer. 9 “This is how you are to pray:”
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread;
12 and forgive us our debts,
as we forgive our debtors;
13 and do not subject us to the final test,
but deliver us from the evil one.
14 If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions.” [NABRE]
My take away this week is; our Father knows what we need, and we need to ask for our daily bread and forgiveness, and forgive those who hurt us. Just repeating the words is not the action. While I pray the words, I need to find the wrongs against me that I harbor in my heart and let my soul forgive.
It does not mean it won’t come up again. When I grieve and heal, it is a long process. Feelings of resentment, hurt, and anger can fester every day. This is why the statement, Give us today our daily bread; 12 and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors, means so much to me today.
Because we receive God’s gifts of “bread” and he forgives us daily. He strengthens us daily. We have a part in His Gifts too. His forgiveness has a condition: But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions.
Wow! Forgiveness is a daily action we can take for God to heal and feed us daily. Our families, friends, neighbors, and our world needs our forgiveness more than ever. Join me in sitting at the feet of Jesus, letting go of our hurts and cares by putting forgiveness into action.
May God bless you with His Light, Guidance, and Forgiveness in the Storm today; may the Peace of God be with you.
P.S. I am not a theologian or scholar. This is merely my understanding of what God has shown me today. Thank you Milly.