"Then Peter came and said to him, “Lord, if another member of the church sins against me, how often should I forgive? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “Not seven times, but, I tell you, seventy-seven times."
For me the key words in this Gospel are “brother and sister.” If mercy and forgiveness are acts of restoring a relationship, then Jesus is asking us to become brothers and sisters to all. When we need to be merciful and to forgive no matter what, we do it as we would for a sibling.
Jesus asks for forgiveness and mercy to be shown not on our tit-for-tat terms, but on the basis of immense and infinite love that God has for all who share God’s life. By each of our own lives, we are brothers and sisters loved by God, no exceptions. This is the reality for each one of us—we all have the capacity to show mercy and forgive with abandonment.
I ask Jesus to give us all the courage and joy to continue to walk with him and answer his challenging call to share God’s mercy.