Forgiveness . . . an act that can uplift our soul when given or weigh it down when denied.
I know from experience that it can be very saddening to not receive someone’s forgiveness when you have wronged them. You carry around with you the burden of the offense. For me, I can lose sleep over this, feel like a dark cloud is over me, in other words, feel depressed. I make attempts to rectify what I had done to wrong the other person, but they may disregard these attempts and show no signs of forgiveness.
Could you imagine if God treated us this way? What if God denied our attempts of any act of contrition? Then, we would be doomed to walk this earth with the burden of our sins, of our offenses against God. Thankfully, though, God DOES forgive. Reconciliation is a wonderful sacrament that allows us to ask for God’s forgiveness and then receive it. What a relief! If only humans would all forgive this easily.
To live our lives according to God’s will, we must live our lives as Jesus taught. In this week’s readings, we learn that God wants us to forgive others as He forgives us. If we do not forgive, we risk God denying our acts of contrition when we offend Him.
For this week, read Matthew 17:1-18:35.
- What verse(s) stood out to you and why?
- Jesus states that if we have faith, our prayers will be answered. How strong is your faith? Are your prayers answered? If not, is it due to a lack of faith? (see Matthew 17:20-21)
- To be humble, we must take care of everyone, including those who our society may deem unworthy or not important. Do you serve everyone and treat everyone with respect? To whom do you have the hardest time, or take the least amount of time, to serve or show respect? (see Matthew 18:1-14)
- Do you believe in guardian angels? If so, what type of relationship do you have with your’s? (see Matthew 18:10)
- Is there someone who has wronged you, but with whom you have not reconciled? What steps can you take to rectify this? (see Matthew 18:15-20) Furthermore, we are to be forgiving towards others as we want God to forgive us. Are you more like the king or more like the unmerciful servant when it comes to forgiveness? (see Matthew 18:21-35)
- Additional Questions found in your study guide or in the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible – The Gospel of Matthew