Good morning to you all!
Poor Rayne was off work yesterday after having the vaccination the other day. Fortunately he’s fine today and it gave me the opportunity to play the nurse for a few hours.
He had a morning shift this morning meaning he got up at about 5.45 and cycled to work for a 7.30 start. I decided to surprise him this morning by cycling after him but I didn’t catch up! Nonetheless I messaged him at the hospital and he was very happy and surprised to see me there!!
I cycled back to Kensington where I attended 8am mass at the Carmelites with morning adoration after.
‘Pray hard and play hard” it does work. Spirituality and sport go hand in hand just like the body and soul.
Anyway all that aside today I was reflecting on God’s anger and forgiveness.
Today’s Gospel reading challenges us to do good to our enemies and to forgive them so where then we may ask does anger fit in and if God Himself is asking us to forgive, how then can God Himself be angry with us?
In other words, is ‘forgiveness’ an excuse to just continue to do evil and hide behind God?!
The best thing to do is to read the Gospels to see how Jesus behaved with His enemies.
His main enemies were the scribes and the pharisees and on more than one occasion He spoke to them very severely. Here is an example from the gospel of Matthew.
27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs,(AB) which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.
So how then can a Jesus who’s preaching about forgiveness speak like this to His own enemies? Is Jesus a hypocrite and preaching one thing and practicing another?
Well obviously not as Jesus was perfect and without sin. His anger was righteous anger and not unforgiveness and I’m sure that while He spoke to the pharisees very severely, deep in His heart He prayed that they would wake up and repent of their evil ways.
And so this is the anger of God! It’s when people push God too far and refuse to obey the law of their conscience to repent. Their evil then becomes a danger to both themselves and society and if they continue to refuse God’s mercy, they will face His anger and judgement.
I recall reading that once the cure of Ars prayed and asked to see God’s justice and he was left absolutely terrified. Is it no wonder he spent his life praying for souls to convert?
Sadly we live in a world where so many people are so impoverished spiritually that they do not listen to Jesus or to take God seriously. The result is a society full of lust, abortions, atheism and selfishness where those that believe and follow Jesus are abused and said to be the evil ones!!
Many people are so hard of heart that it seems that they won’t stop until evil is proclaimed as Holy and this hard attitude and refusal to acknowledge God is the very thing that will draw the wrath of God on them and on the world. This is what Jesus told St. Faustinas:
So what does all this mean to us today? Very simply it means that we must be strong, we must be focused, we must be ready to defend our faith and to challenge injustice and hypocrisy in our world and we must pray that those people will be receive the grace of conversion for their own good and for the good of the people around them so that like St. Paul they may go from lives of hating Jesus and hating the gospel to lives of being on fire for Jesus and bringing His gospel of repentance and transformation to a broken world and a broken church.
‘Thank you Jesus for your love, help us to respond more fully to your call and to live your message more radically, more fully and more joyfully.”
Have a super day!