Sr. Myra Grijaldo,tc
We are called by the Lord to form a community who love, serve, and support one another, making on earth an image of the Triune God who has that sheer bond of relationship with one another.
We are a community of sisters with three members from different nations – Colombia, Korea, and the Philippines. The differences in language, culture, family upbringing and personality greatly affect community living. In addition, our age gap. Though called for the same purpose and mission, each of us has our own perspective. We may have some things in common, but in others, we may vary in view and opinion. But, when it comes to community matters, we always come up with one result, one decision, and one agreement that the three of us become responsible for it.
It cannot be avoided that in some instances we come across misinterpretation and argument. Each one has her own belief. This conflict, sometimes, leads to offending and hurting others. At times, it takes some moment to process the event. It entails grace from the Lord to humble oneself, and rather than justifying, the acceptance of what had happened is necessary.
“…and forgive us our sins, as we forgive everyone who sins against us…” Luke 11:4
“Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not just seven times, but seventy-seven times!” – Matthew 18:21-22
Every day, we are praying the Lord’s Prayer and in it, we beg pardon for the offenses we made. If one experiences the forgiveness of sins and feels how it is to be truly redeemed, these will lead to the consequence of forgiving others as well. God has forgiven me of my sins, so I want to forgive others the way God has forgiven me. One needs grace from the Lord to do this, and every day is a patient practice in doing so.
No matter how many times one feels offended, the Lord is inviting us to forgive again and again. More so, it is important to pray for those who offended us, and to let go of grievances. At times it is difficult to forgive when we are caught in a situation of hurt and pain, but the grace of God accompanies us to do so and to let go.
Jesus forgave His offenders and prayed for them when He was nailed on the cross. We commit ourselves to follow Jesus, and this includes forgiving and praying for those who offended us.
Attached to this beautiful experience of forgiveness is the renewal of commitment to love and care for others. If we are true to our promise to love and serve the Lord, there will always be a place for forgiveness and letting go. More than being hurt, we have the capacity to transcend.