Thought of the Day March 21, 2019 Jesus teaches us by example

By 9:45 AM


"Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do."

There is a further question to ponder. Why did Jesus pray to the Father to forgive those who rejected and injured the Son? Why did he not forgive them himself? St. Bernard replies that He prayed to the Father, not because He could not Himself forgive them, but that He might teach us to pray for them that persecute us. In other words, as he has forgiven us, he models for us the need to pray for those who have offended us in any way.

Lord, when you prayed to the Father on the cross to forgive me, you were asking mercy for me not justice. You even went so far as to attribute invincible ignorance as an excuse for my sins. But in reality, I deserve the justice of condemnation rather than the mercy of forgiveness. In reality, my sin was consciously deliberate, even though stupid. What I didn't realized or take into account were the eternal consequences of my selfish choices. Like Esau, I chose immediate gratification of my desires at the expense of my inheritance. Like Peter, I gave in to my fear of suffering at the cost of denying the Lord. Whatever the situation and whatever the reason, I sinned. Yet in your mercy you forgive me unconditionally to provide a way for repentance and reconciliation. Without the grace of your initial forgiveness, there would be no effective restoration of relationship. (To be continued)


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