Grace to you!
A story was told of a man who kept postponing the time to reconcile with his father. A situation will arise which seems right for him to extend a handshake to his dad, but he will continue to say in his mind, “not yet.” This went on and on while the voice of God, the voice of conscience, kept hammering: Do it now.
Unfortunately, the day he finally decided to do it, he received terrible news the same morning. His father has died. The shocking news, plus his pain, which was aggravated by the fact he couldn’t reconcile with his father before he passed, tormented him all his life.
Too many individuals hardly forgive themselves for missed opportunities. It could be opportunities to reconcile with a relative or a friend or a colleague, which was missed; or opportunities to help a poor stranger who came around and was ignored. Then years later, such thoughts come back to the mind, eliciting deep memories of regret. My advice: make the best of the moment you have now.
As you read this, are there items on your to-do-list you’ve kept pushing aside? May grace reach you as you get back to them. Amen.
There is an old English proverb that says: “A stitch in time saves nine.” A similar maxim: “Make hay while the sun shines.” Procrastinating what we should do now isn’t a wonderful strategy. Neither in our professional life nor in our spiritual life is it a good idea.
Scripture speaking about the need not to take the mercy of God for granted says: “Do not say, “I sinned, and what happened to me?” for the Lord is slow to anger. Do not be so confident of atonement that you add sin to sin. Do not say, “His mercy is great, he will forgive the multitude of my sins,” for both mercy and wrath are with him, and his anger rests on sinners.” (Sirach 5:4-6)
Some may say, but that is the God of the Old Testament. Well, we better be sure the same God who spoke in the Old Testament is the Living God today. He doesn’t change. Divine Mercy isn’t forced on anyone; otherwise God would be a tyrant. Divine Mercy for the sinner is granted to the mouth that says, “I am sorry” not the one that says, “I don’t need mercy.”
The gift of freedom, which God has given, extends to everything, including access to the mercy of God. Hence, may we not postpone the hour of mercy. “Do not delay to turn to the Lord, nor postpone it from day to day” (Sirach 5:7).
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
Fr. Maurice Emelu, Ph.D.
Father Maurice provides a daily blog of reflections based on Scriptural readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration and developing your own thoughts. It may also be helpful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.