LENT 2020 – Day 21

Dan 3, 2, 11-20; Ps 24, 4-9; Mt 18, 21-35

Even though Azariah’s Prayer has a specific context, we know that he prayed for his country as a whole. His words of lamentation fit the current mood worldwide: we are “brought low this day in all the world because of our sins.” So, making Azariah’s prayer our own, let’s say: “Do not put us to shame, but deal with us in thy forbearance and in thy abundant mercy.” This sentiment is in the hearts of millions faced with the corona virus.

Quite often, deadly sins stand between relatives and friends, causing social and emotional distance. Some sins of our generation cry out to heaven! Curiously, in the Our Father we conveniently focus on the “forgive-us-our-trespasses” part of it and gloss over the words “as we forgive those who have trespassed against us.”

Jesus wants us to forgive “seventy times seven”, to ensure that we are in forgiveness mode all the time. His mercy and forgiveness is limitless; he even gave up his life to pay the price for our sins. This is a huge debt that we can’t repay; we can only participate in His suffering by relieving our neighbour of their own….

“Remember your mercy, Lord,” we pray. And He does remember His mercy at all times. What about us and our mercy vis-à-vis our neighbour?