Posted tagged ‘mercy’


May 23, 2019


It is strange to say that we discover Christ in one another
through forgiveness.
Perhaps this is because we have a wrong conception
of forgiveness.
So often, alas, as we use it,
it is condescension following upon condemnation.

But it should not be.

It should be the most direct way of healing a wound.

It goes beyond all possible explanations
and all possible misunderstandings.
It does not even ask to be understood…

Christ is utterly sinless;
if someone has injured us,
it cannot be Christ in him that has injured us.

But no one can do wrong without wounding himself.

Sin always wounds the sinner,
but Christ has taken this great wounding to Himself.
All His wounds, all His suffering, the whole of His passion,
is the wounding of sin–

ours the sinning;
His the redeeming wound of our sin.

Forgiveness, then,
is a reaching out to comfort and heal
that wound in our friend
which Christ in him bears
because of the wrong he did to us
~Caryll Houselander, The Reed of God

The Pharisee’s Lament

March 6, 2013

+Luke 15:1-3, 11-32 (prodigal son)

I am the older brother
looking down
a supercilious nose
at scum
I hoped to never see again.
How dare he!
drag the filth of pigpen
to our fine and honest house!

But I’m the pig!

I see that
in my father’s eyes
as he comes out to plead with me
–not that he scolds–
I see myself for who I am
compared to him.

I am the one who’s soiling
our home
with ugliness
and stench.

My brother has come clean–
but I have not.
I envy him!
Resentment still infects my heart
and poisons those I meet.

I am ashamed,
but pride entraps me
so that I cannot admit
that I am wrong,
cannot believe
that there is mercy
to restore
the likes of me.

I’d rather spend the night
in misery
here in the outer darkness
with the beasts
than join the feast.
This is my self-made hell
on earth.

Please pray for me!

Deep in my soul
I really do want
to come home
for the first time.

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