Thought of the Day February 2, 2016

By 11:32 AM

"There are two sides to forgiveness: giving and receiving. Although at first sight giving seems to be harder, it often appears that we are not able to offer forgiveness to others because we have not been able fully to receive it. Only as people who have accepted forgiveness can we find the inner freedom to give it. Why is receiving forgiveness so difficult? It is very hard to say, "Without your forgiveness I am still bound to what happened between us. Only you can set me free." That requires not only a confession that we have hurt somebody but also the humility to acknowledge our dependency on others. Only when we can receive forgiveness can we give it." (Henri Nouwen) How true! And yet how often we feel unworthy of forgiveness, which we are, but fail to realize that it is a grace from God. This is what we are refusing--God's love in the act of forgiveness. Whatever we feel ashamed of is nothing in comparison to refusing God's love.  In a sense we make our decision not to accept God's forgiveness, which includes forgiving ourselves, more important than his merciful love. Is there something wrong with this picture?

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