Mumbai Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR) | WAVES OF MERCY

WAVES OF MERCY

WAVES OF MERCY
7th March, 2016
Mrs. Leela Moraes (Courtesy Charisindia Magazine) WAVES OF MERCY
 WAVES OF MERCY
 
     What a privilege to be in the Jubilee Year- The Year of Mercy!!

 Even as we consider what it means to celebrate the Year of Mercy, one cannot help but stop to marvel at the wondrous mercy of our loving God. The Father of all mercies has been super-generous in lavishing upon us His unfailing grace and mercy from the moment He breathed life into us until the moment we return to His tender arms of love and mercy.
            What does it mean to celebrate the Year of Mercy?
  1. Think about His Mercy:
            It is an awesome reality that God has shared His very image and likeness with us. In His own image and likeness, He created man (Gen 1:26) and gave to mankind freedom and authority over all of creation. Inspite of human pride and disobedience, God continues to love us intimately and passionately. He blesses us with the joy of savoring His creation and experiencing His goodness in a hundred ways. Despite our unfaithfulness, His faithful love and mercy endure forever (II Tim 2:13). This mercy spurs us to what is called charity. No doubt we are taught that charity means we love God above all things for His own sake and our neighbour as ourselves for the love of God (CCC 1822).
 
  1. Act upon His mercy:
            The tender mercy of God reaches out to us in our weakness, in all our failures and sinfulness. God remains our gentle, caring, loving Father. He restores our fellowship with Him by simply forgiving us unconditionally. He allowed His only begotten Son, Jesus, to pay the price for our sin and suffer death. Indeed this is the mercy of God. He loved us while we were yet sinners (Rom 5:6-8).
            We are challenged to be merciful and forgive those who hurt us, be it deliberately or unintentionally. For the grace of God is poured into our hearts. He forgives us over and over again. May we too be willing to be merciful as our Father in heaven is merciful (Lk 6:36).
 
  1. Make His merciful presence felt:
            It is our duty and our privilege to reach out to the less fortunate with acts of mercy. Surely, each of us knows of people who are in financial need, who are elderly, lonely, sick, suffering or helpless in one way or another. Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy (Mt 5:7).
            Doing charity, spending time and energy with the needy, reaching out a helping hand to those in distress… this is what we, as Christians ought to be doing every day. Taking heed of Jesus’ words in Mat 25:31-46, we are reminded to partake of the corporal works of mercy which consist especially in feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and imprisoned and burying the dead. Among all these, giving alms to the poor is one of the chief witnesses to fraternal charity and is also a work of justice pleasing to God (CCC 2447-C). After all, Jesus dwells within us and we are His hands, feet, voice and His Body in this world. By showing merciful love to those who need it, we are bringing the merciful love of the Father to all His children.
 
  1. Let mercy be evident in our words:
            One huge challenge in this Year of Mercy would be for us to be gracious and merciful in the way we speak. Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, suggested that one of our New Year’s resolutions could be: ‘be careful of how you speak. Purify your tongue of all offensive words, vulgarity and worldly decadence.’ Indeed, if we all did this, our speech would be free of uncharitable comments, judgements, harsh or rude remarks, gossip, slander, revengeful suggestions and all that might express a lack of mercy in our hearts.
            May our speech be gracious and always communicative of a merciful God who teaches us to be merciful in every way and at all times.
 
  1. Develop an attitude of mercy:
            All too often, we try to justify our hard-heartedness and indifference to those who need us. We reason that some people just like to take advantage of others. We argue that it always seems to be the same people who want help and then behave ungratefully. We tell ourselves (and sometimes others too!), that being kind and merciful is not worth it.
            What would have been our plight if God has reasoned this way about us? How rightly did William Shakespeare declare! “For in the course of justice none of us would see salvation!”
            Perhaps it’s time to make a paradigm shift in our very way of thinking. We are challenged to stop looking down on the less gifted in our prayer groups or on the less fortunate in our society and leave all judgements to God, who alone knows our hearts.
 
  1. Let the world know God’s heart of mercy:
             St. Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians, encourages them to honour the Father of all mercies by comforting those in tribulation with the very same comfort which they have received (II Cor 1:34). For us who know the abiding presence of God, this Year of Mercy must spur us on to share with others His unfathomable mercy. It is our supreme calling as baptized Christians to share in the mission of Jesus Christ. He died and gave us eternal life. It is now our task to show forth the mercy of God to this world that is broken by violence and hatred, sin and suffering. After all; instructing, advising, consoling, comforting are spiritual works of mercy as are forgiving and bearing wrongs patiently (CCC 2447-B).
            The Church exists to evangelize. We ought to be courageous in our untiring proclamation that ‘Christ has died, Christ has risen and yes, Christ will surely come again! The ultimate act of mercy would be to share about Jesus with others and to bring them into a relationship of sonship with the merciful heavenly Father-that all may know the deep joy and peace we experience by living daily in His presence.
           
The Catechism of the Catholic Church has very aptly expressed that the works of mercy are charitable actions by which we come to the aid of our neighbour both in his spiritual and bodily necessities (CCC 2447-A). It is for this very reason that we ought to strive towards growing in the spiritual works of mercy as well as the corporal works of mercy.
 
            We pray that we all may walk through the Door of Mercy and find strength to live in mercy. Walking through the Door of Mercy indicates the desire for the forgiveness of sins and it symbolizes a leaving behind of the past to enter into a new life through Christ who is the door.
Let the waves of God’s ocean of mercy flow into us, and through us into all those around us, creating endless ripples of mercy reflecting His holy image, Amen.
WAVES OF MERCY
            What a privilege to be in the Jubilee Year- The Year of Mercy!!
            Even as we consider what it means to celebrate the Year of Mercy, one cannot help but stop to marvel at the wondrous mercy of our loving God. The Father of all mercies has been super-generous in lavishing upon us His unfailing grace and mercy from the moment He breathed life into us until the moment we return to His tender arms of love and mercy.
            What does it mean to celebrate the Year of Mercy?
  1. Think about His Mercy:
            It is an awesome reality that God has shared His very image and likeness with us. In His own image and likeness, He created man (Gen 1:26) and gave to mankind freedom and authority over all of creation. Inspite of human pride and disobedience, God continues to love us intimately and passionately. He blesses us with the joy of savoring His creation and experiencing His goodness in a hundred ways. Despite our unfaithfulness, His faithful love and mercy endure forever (II Tim 2:13). This mercy spurs us to what is called charity. No doubt we are taught that charity means we love God above all things for His own sake and our neighbour as ourselves for the love of God (CCC 1822).
 
  1. Act upon His mercy:
            The tender mercy of God reaches out to us in our weakness, in all our failures and sinfulness. God remains our gentle, caring, loving Father. He restores our fellowship with Him by simply forgiving us unconditionally. He allowed His only begotten Son, Jesus, to pay the price for our sin and suffer death. Indeed this is the mercy of God. He loved us while we were yet sinners (Rom 5:6-8).
            We are challenged to be merciful and forgive those who hurt us, be it deliberately or unintentionally. For the grace of God is poured into our hearts. He forgives us over and over again. May we too be willing to be merciful as our Father in heaven is merciful (Lk 6:36).
 
  1. Make His merciful presence felt:
            It is our duty and our privilege to reach out to the less fortunate with acts of mercy. Surely, each of us knows of people who are in financial need, who are elderly, lonely, sick, suffering or helpless in one way or another. Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy (Mt 5:7).
            Doing charity, spending time and energy with the needy, reaching out a helping hand to those in distress… this is what we, as Christians ought to be doing every day. Taking heed of Jesus’ words in Mat 25:31-46, we are reminded to partake of the corporal works of mercy which consist especially in feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and imprisoned and burying the dead. Among all these, giving alms to the poor is one of the chief witnesses to fraternal charity and is also a work of justice pleasing to God (CCC 2447-C). After all, Jesus dwells within us and we are His hands, feet, voice and His Body in this world. By showing merciful love to those who need it, we are bringing the merciful love of the Father to all His children.
 
  1. Let mercy be evident in our words:
            One huge challenge in this Year of Mercy would be for us to be gracious and merciful in the way we speak. Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, suggested that one of our New Year’s resolutions could be: ‘be careful of how you speak. Purify your tongue of all offensive words, vulgarity and worldly decadence.’ Indeed, if we all did this, our speech would be free of uncharitable comments, judgements, harsh or rude remarks, gossip, slander, revengeful suggestions and all that might express a lack of mercy in our hearts.
            May our speech be gracious and always communicative of a merciful God who teaches us to be merciful in every way and at all times.
 
  1. Develop an attitude of mercy:
            All too often, we try to justify our hard-heartedness and indifference to those who need us. We reason that some people just like to take advantage of others. We argue that it always seems to be the same people who want help and then behave ungratefully. We tell ourselves (and sometimes others too!), that being kind and merciful is not worth it.
            What would have been our plight if God has reasoned this way about us? How rightly did William Shakespeare declare! “For in the course of justice none of us would see salvation!”
            Perhaps it’s time to make a paradigm shift in our very way of thinking. We are challenged to stop looking down on the less gifted in our prayer groups or on the less fortunate in our society and leave all judgements to God, who alone knows our hearts.
 
  1. Let the world know God’s heart of mercy:
             St. Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians, encourages them to honour the Father of all mercies by comforting those in tribulation with the very same comfort which they have received (II Cor 1:34). For us who know the abiding presence of God, this Year of Mercy must spur us on to share with others His unfathomable mercy. It is our supreme calling as baptized Christians to share in the mission of Jesus Christ. He died and gave us eternal life. It is now our task to show forth the mercy of God to this world that is broken by violence and hatred, sin and suffering. After all; instructing, advising, consoling, comforting are spiritual works of mercy as are forgiving and bearing wrongs patiently (CCC 2447-B).
            The Church exists to evangelize. We ought to be courageous in our untiring proclamation that ‘Christ has died, Christ has risen and yes, Christ will surely come again! The ultimate act of mercy would be to share about Jesus with others and to bring them into a relationship of sonship with the merciful heavenly Father-that all may know the deep joy and peace we experience by living daily in His presence.
           
The Catechism of the Catholic Church has very aptly expressed that the works of mercy are charitable actions by which we come to the aid of our neighbour both in his spiritual and bodily necessities (CCC 2447-A). It is for this very reason that we ought to strive towards growing in the spiritual works of mercy as well as the corporal works of mercy.
 
            We pray that we all may walk through the Door of Mercy and find strength to live in mercy. Walking through the Door of Mercy indicates the desire for the forgiveness of sins and it symbolizes a leaving behind of the past to enter into a new life through Christ who is the door.
Let the waves of God’s ocean of mercy flow into us, and through us into all those around us, creating endless ripples of mercy reflecting His holy image, Amen.