Today is Ash Wednesday, where we enter into the desert of our souls to align ourselves with our suffering Lord in anticipation of the Resurrection. As we turn to God, we find our highest calling. As we follow our Lord’s example, one of the simplest rules we are to follow is the hardest to live at times: do unto others as you would have them do unto you. I have many opportunities to practice this throughout my day when I meet people who want my attention, face people with different opinions or even drive on the freeway.
We are called to be merciful.
Mercy is defined as “compassion or forgiveness shown to someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm.” It is in times when someone wrongs me that I have great power and responsibility. I can choose to get in the space of “I’m right and you’re wrong” or keep score, or I can practice mercy. And the Lord’s mercy keeps no score.
The Lord does not stop to think whether or not we are worthy of mercy and forgiveness, He simply gives it. He gives His compassion and mercy freely and willingly to us, to our enemies, to everyone in between. It is merely a gift.
Each of us are called to give mercy to each other; to see one another’s humanity and choose to love anyway. Each of us are called by the Lord in some way to receive His mercy in the most beautiful way possible through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. With His grace and mercy, we are made new, and we are alive again.
As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.Ephesians 4:1-6
My Lord help me to love You through the mercy I show others. Walk with me in conversation with my friends, family, and strangers who I may come across. May my intentions be made known to You, and may they be free of vengeance, revenge, jealousy, or the desire to be right. Grant me the grace to desire mercy for myself and for others.