Living Life in the Year of Mercy

Almost a month. That’s how long the sacred doors that ushered in the Year of Mercy have been opened. Pope Francis opened these doors and the graces of Mercy began to flow into our hearts and souls. Ideally, our hearts were opened to accept these graces, and the world became a better place.

Mercy, something we all crave, but not, necessarily, something we give. Life does interfere, and our human condition, often more open to sin than to grace, puts on the brakes, and we choose to sin rather than to love unconditionally.

Life, in this Year of Mercy, has challenged me. I’m not an evil person, but I am a sinful person. My soul requires weekly cleansing through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. I am challenged by people I don’t like. I am faced daily with the Tree of Good and Evil. Which will I choose? Most of the time, I choose poorly. Mercy is not my strength, but being judgmental and unkind is. Ouch! Thanks to the grace of God, I have become aware that I need to change. I need to imitate and follow the commands of Jesus to love God above all else and to love my neighbor as myself.

The tree of good and evil. Choosing to love God and my neighbor above myself: I must be kind. I must be love. I must be mercy. Jesus told us that “My grace is enough for You.” All right, I must also learn to Trust. Is this possible? Jesus can do anything. He is the God of miracles. I have to ask Him for help, then I have to step aside and trust that He will keep His word. He can’t lie. He is God. I must trust.

I am pleased, though. In less than a month I have become of aware of the times when I am not merciful. This might hurt, but love does hurt at times. God has moved me out of my comfort zone and said, “Look. See. This is where you need to be, not here where you cannot see.” God opened my eyes to His Love when He extended Mercy to me. Now, I must do the same. I might not like you, for whatever reason, but I have to love you. By loving you, I must be merciful. If I am merciful to myself, I must be merciful to you.

Mercy, a gift of God. Performing the spiritual acts of mercy are great, but Mercy is more than that. Mercy is loving and blessing each soul we encounter. Daily, souls come into our lives. Some of them we like. Some of them we don’t. Whether we like them or not, we must love them and bless all. As difficult as this can be, especially when we don’t like someone, we must extend mercy.

Jesus, my Lord, my God, my All. I trust in You. Make me a instrument of Your Mercy. Teach me to love as You love us. Forgive me and bless those I to whom I don’t extend Mercy. I love You, My Jesus. Amen.