Grace to you!
As I look at the picture of Divine Mercy (and I would suggest you fix your gaze on it as well), I see mercy as never before. I am reminded of the very nature of human weakness, the ugliness of sin and the triumph of God’s Mercy.
Let me say this bluntly, sin is boring.
Do you know what is exciting? It’s a penitent heart. It’s when a repentant person comes before the one sinned against, deeply sorry. Ask a priest at the confessional and he will tell you; ask parents with a problem child and they will inform you. The joys of reconciliation surpass that of many human excitements.
Divine Mercy Sunday is a special day to be immersed in this most exciting aspect of human relationship with God. Don’t you realize when God stares at the sinner, He looks with compassion; and when He gazes at a repentant sinner, He looks with mercy?
God’s mercy isn’t like ours. For us, mercy goes with memory. For us, we can forgive, but can’t forget. For us, people must merit mercy. For us, we have to make them pay for what they’ve done. Isn’t this an integral part of our justice system? For us, mercy keeps records.
Divine Mercy is completely different. No one merits it. No one can afford it. It’s grace at its best. God forgives and deletes the memory, to use an imperfect human analogy. No track record any more. God’s mercy isn’t dependent on our restitution, because our restitution can’t, in strict sense, remedy the infinite consequences of sin. God’s priority isn’t retribution, but reconciliation.
His mercy is dependent on the merits of His Sorrowful Passion. He looks at the blood of His Son and looks down to see us at the foot of that Cross; and His gaze is of mercy and compassion. We better be at the foot of that Cross where blood and water of mercy are generously dispensed.
It appears to me that in terms of sin and a penitent, God does not look at the sinner first, but at the Son and through the Son to the sinner. In other words, God’s gaze on repentant sinners is through the lens of His Son. The sinner becomes part of the Body of Christ and when God looks at that sinner, He sees the scars, the wounds, and the blood of the Redeemer, cleansing the wounds of sin of the sinner. God sees the Crucified in the sinner and showers mercy and healing.
It seems to me that the Divine Mercy Devotion signature—“Jesus I trust in you,” is a constant appeal to this merit of the Son for us. It’s an example of immersion in Divine Mercy.
As we celebrate this special day of Mercy, may we approach Jesus with humble acknowledgment of our need for mercy. May we come with a contrite heart and witness the excitement of reconciliation with God at the Great Sacrament of Mercy, Confession. May we also show mercy to others, not because they merit it, but because it’s God’s will for those who have been shown mercy. And may our mercy equally manifest itself in corporal works of mercy for the unloved, the poor, the lonely, the imprisoned, the homeless and addicts.
Pray: For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world. Amen. Lord Jesus, make us your instruments and disciples of mercy. Amen.
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Divine Mercy Sunday, Second Sunday of Easter]
Father Maurice provides a daily blog of reflections based on the bible 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.