Mon 21st March 2017

3rd Week in Lent
Dan. 3:15,34-43
Ps. 25(24):4-5,6,7,8-9
Mt. 18:21-35    (Ps Wk III)

The three young men in Daniel’s story were helpless and at the mercy of their persecutors. They had nothing except their strong faith in God — so in a sense, they had everything. They humbled themselves before God and prayed for deliverance and this was granted. When we are powerless and humbled we are actually strongest, because that is when God can truly act on our behalf. But absolute faith and trust is essential — that makes the difference. Trusting God is difficult when we struggle with difficult situations but it is most effective — try it!

Seventy times seven times is an ancient way of saying ‘a million times’. Peter probably didn’t like what he heard. It is difficult to forgive those who have wronged or hurt us. But as the parable points out, we too have been forgiven many times. Just as with the unforgiving debtor, if we are unwilling to be merciful and forgiving to others we should not expect that we will be shown mercy and forgiveness. If we are hard on others, we should not be surprised if we are treated in a similar way.

When we are merciful and forgiving towards others, all of our relationships change. We contribute to building a peaceful society and world. Cleansing our hearts of anger and unforgiving attitudes is the first step to a better life.

Lord, grant me a merciful and forgiving heart.