The face of God is mercy, and, as His children, we are made in His image to resemble Him in every way. However, it can be truly hard to forgive when we have been profoundly hurt, especially by those we love!
Consider that Christ was profoundly hurt too: he was tortured, and even killed by Men, who He loved. Yet, He forgave them. Forgiveness is divine, it is a grace that we can receive if we ask for it.
Making An Act of Contrition, and praying for God’s forgiveness is essential, but so is asking for reconciliation and the strength to forgive. In his letter to the Ephesians, St. Paul reminds us how important it is to deal with our conflicts.
“Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger” (Ephesians 4:26)
“O Lord. I want to be completely transformed into Your mercy and to be Your living reflection. May the greatest of all divine attributes, that of Your unfathomable mercy, pass through my heart and soul to my neighbor.
Help me, O Lord, that my eyes may be merciful, so that I may never suspect or judge from appearances, but look for what is beautiful in my neighbour's souls and come to their rescue.
Help me, that my ears may be merciful, so that I may give heed to my neighbours' needs and not be indifferent to their pains and moanings.
Help me, O Lord, that my tongue may be merciful, so that I should never speak negatively of my neighbour, but have a word of comfort and forgiveness for all.
Help me, O Lord, that my hands may be merciful and filled with good deeds, so that I may do only good to my neighbours and take upon myself the more difficult and toilsome tasks.
Help me, that my feet may be merciful, so that I may hurry to assist my neighbour overcoming my own fatigue and weariness. My true rest is in the service of my neighbour.
Help me, O Lord, that my heart may be merciful so that I myself may feel all the sufferings of my neighbour. I will refuse my heart to no one. I will be sincere even with those who, I know, will abuse my kindness. And I will lock myself up in the most merciful Heart of Jesus. I will bear my own suffering in silence. May Your mercy, O Lord, rest upon me.
“Father, nothing is as difficult as truly forgiving those who hurt me, especially the ones I love, who deeply offended me
How hard it is to forgive them!
So many thoughts run through my mind:
‘Did I start the conflict?’
‘Is it worth it to continue?’
‘I cannot forgive now,
Forgiveness costs me so: is it even possible?
Father, I know that pardon and forgiveness only comes through you.
Grant me the grace of Your Mercy,
bless me with the strength to reconcile with those who are close to me, and with those who are far away: a spouse who’s gone, a child that left.
Help me love my neighbour
Do not let the sun go down on my anger and on my grudges
Grace me with making the first step, and I will resemble You.
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