Humans are meant to react to hurt by wanting to do something about it. When our hand gets burned by a flame, we quickly pull it away to safety. When we break a bone, we keep the injury still. When we have a laceration we clean and bandage it. Emotional wounds, however, can present more of a problem.
When my child is insulted, I feel angry. When someone excludes him I feel helpless and sad. When someone I trust lies, I feel betrayed. I am tempted to do something about it. I want to avenge the wrong. I want to correct the injustice and make sure it does not happen to someone else.
But that is not necessarily the course God wants me to take, and it is not necessarily the path by which healing will be brought forth.
God knows and understands my emotional pain and He does not ask me to deny it. He asks me instead to let it pass into His hands. He is my Caretaker and He shall spread His healing balm over my wounds and the wounds of my child. He brings us restoration according to His Will, His Way, and in His Time.
When God calls us to stand up to our offenders, we must do so with courage and faith. When anointed, we are empowered to serve as His apostles, evangelists, intercessors, and servants. When God calls us to quietly absolve our offenders, we must do so with the same courage and faith.
Last Sunday was the Feast of Christ the King in the Catholic Church. The Gospel Reading was from Matthew 25:31-46 (what you did/did not do for one of these least ones, you did/did not do for me). It reminded me that when my child is excluded, Christ is excluded. When my child is mocked, Christ is mocked. When I am betrayed, Christ is betrayed.
And when I do not show mercy to another, I do not show mercy to Him.
The only true justice for injury is His. And whether we are called to publicly stand or quietly exculpate, there is no healing except in showing mercy and forgiveness. To submit to His mercy and all it asks of us is to submit to opening our eyes to see things we might otherwise have missed. It is to realize that when we ask our Savior the question, "Lord, when did we see You?" Jesus will answer, "When not?"
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, help me acknowledge my feelings when I am hurt and let them flow into You. Help me to be compassionate and merciful in the disappointments and unfairness of life, especially in the thoughtlessness of others, in the insincerity of those I trusted, and in the unfaithfulness of those on whom I relied.