Meditation for Saturday of the Second Week of Lent
(Micah 7:14-15, 18-20; Lk 15: 1-3, 11-32)
As we come to the end of the second Week of Lent, we exalt God’s mercy and forgiveness. Recalling the great mercy and faithfulness of God inspires us to repentance, especially at this solemn season. “Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over transgression for the remnant of his inheritance? He does not retain His anger forever because He delights in mercy.”
The great mercy of God is clearly demonstrated in the parable of the prodigal son. It is an ocean of mercy that human reasoning cannot exhaust “How many of father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise and go to my father…” It is such a mercy that takes away the shame and wretchedness of a prodigal son, restores his dignity and beauty as a son, and satisfies his hunger. A little glimpse of this mercy inspires every sinner to trace his way back to God.
The prodigal son depicts the state of a soul in sin, who has fallen from the state of grace, but ruled by human will and desires. The mercy of God steps forward like the father of the prodigal son, gives him a warm embrace and kiss that boosts his confidence to confess. Even before confessing, the STEPS home already earned him a merciful embrace! Imagine the prodigal son, dirty as he was, in the grips of his father’s arms, who was dressed in royalty! Here, love for his son has triumphed over the wounds of the boy’s selfishness. So, the boy’s hunger is turned into a feasting, his dirt and nakedness covered best robe, ring and shoes; his death was turned to fullness of life!
How great is the mercy of God. “The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy. The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works” (Ps 145:8-9). If an imperfect and wayward son could be thus love, how much more when the Son is perfect? That is why Jesus, the Son of God, is the ‘fount of love’, the ‘Ocean of Mercy’ through whom God forgives us our sins (Rm 3:24-23). And Jesus established His forgiveness solidly in the Sacrament of Confession. Let us approach Him in this Sacrament to obtain mercy and forgiveness of our sins. We might not be worthy as God’s children, but the love the Father has for His Son will always triumph over our weaknesses and failings. His banner over us is love! (Song 2:4).
Fr Jude Chinwenwa Nwachukwu, C.Ss.R
Saints Peter & Paul Catholic Church,
Saturday March 6th, 2021.