“Repent and Forgive” Sub-Pages:
We are all Sinners and Fight a Common Enemy:
Conversion requires convincing of sin; it includes the interior judgment of conscience, and this, being a proof of the action of the Spirit of truth in man’s inmost being, becomes at the same time the start of a new grant of grace and love: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.’ Thus in this ‘convincing concerning sin’ we discover a double gift: the gift of the truth of conscience and the gift of the certainty of redemption. The Spirit of truth is the Consoler. – St. John Paul the Great, as quoted in The Catechism of the Catholic Church, #1848
Evil is tricky – it knows how to get at ME in particular.
No man is any good until he knows how bad he is. – G.K. Chesterton
Be aware of the problem of clinging to one truth at the expense of others: This can lead to great distortions (including heresies). e.g. focusing on “God is just” and ignoring “God is love”.
Most people tend to allow the truth they possess so to dominate their thinking that they see few other truths that place their one truth in perspective and balance it out. There is probably no heresy in the history of the Church that did not have its truth. The problem invariably is that the one truth so took over the heretic’s mind that he was committed to cast out any number of other doctrines that clashed with his interpretation of it. – Fr. Thomas Dubay, Authenticity, pg. 34
The devil wins if you think the other guy is the only problem.
Be aware of what impacts you negatively (in various ways), such as:
• News Media
• Social Media
• Forgetting to Listen
Often the opposite extreme of what gets under your skin is the sin that you are more likely to fall into. But sometimes a fault you share with others is the one you notice and criticize in them.
We *Must* Forgive:
The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant (Matthew 18:21-35) is one of the most intense and chilling stories in the Gospels. In it, a servant is forgiven an incalculable debt by his master and yet turns around and cruelly refuses to forgive a small debt owed by someone else to him. There’s a very strong message here. Our loving and merciful God saves us. He demands that we forgive each other.
Being a Christian means having love; it means achieving the Copernican revolution in our existence, by which we cease to make ourselves the center of the universe, with everyone else revolving around us.
If we look at ourselves honestly and seriously, then there is not just something liberating in this marvelously simple message. There is also something most disturbing. For who among us can say he has never passed by anyone who was hungry or thirsty or who needed us in any way? Who among us can say that he truly, in all simplicity, carries out the service of being kind to others?… Who among us would not have to admit that he is more or less living the pre-Copernican illusion and looking at other people, seeing them as real, only in their relationship to our own selves?… It is at this point that faith begins. For what faith basically means is just that this shortfall that we all have in our love is made up by the surplus of Jesus Christ’s love, acting on our behalf. He simply tells us that God himself has poured out among us a superabundance of his love and has thus made good in advance all our deficiency. Ultimately, faith means nothing other than admitting that we have this kind of shortfall; it means opening our hand and accepting a gift. In its simplest and innermost form, faith is nothing but reaching that point in love at which we recognize that we, too, need to be given something. Faith is thus that stage in love which really distinguishes it as love; it consists in overcoming the complacency and self-satisfaction of the person who says, ‘I have done everything, I don’t need any further help.’ It is only in ‘faith’ like this that selfishness, the real opposite of love, comes to an end. To that extent, faith is already present in and with true loving; it simply represents that impulse in love which leads to its finding its true self: the openness of someone who does not insist on his own capabilities, but is aware of receiving something as a gift and of standing in need of it. – Pope Benedict XVI, What it Means to be a Christian, pgs. 73-75
*The quote at the top of the page from St. Ambrose was found in The Catechism of the Catholic Church #1393