The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant

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Reflection on the Gospel of the Wednesday In The Nineteenth Week In Ordinary Time

Matthew 18:23-19:1

We are blessed to be part of the Church, and the Church has its unique position in imparting God’s graces, one of which is administering the Seven sacraments. Some of the sacraments are are repetitive, while others like Baptism, we receive only once. Amongst the Seven Sacraments, Reconciliation/Confession is special, and we can partake of it countless of times. It is the visible sign of the invisible Love of God for us, that is; sin cannot keep us from God, but guilt can. Guilt that makes us think that we are unworthy of God, when we see such glaring sin and faults in our life. The sign-Confession, informs us that we are forgiven and we can start/continue in our relationship with Christ.

Today’s reading makes us aware of the fruit of forgiveness, i.e. Gratitude. Gratitude dictates that we never forget our past, so we can learn from it, remain humble and accept the grace to live a God filled and enabled life. Knowing the failure rate of humans, Jesus expresses that we never stop forgiving, because you are always failing and are always given one more opportunity by him, time and again. This is the reason Jesus stresses on the seventy-times seven in correcting Peter.

Jesus is telling us to take hold of gratitude and act like the one who forgave us and showed us mercy – God. Likewise we need to act in gratitude and be extensions of God and forgive others. If we do not receive forgiveness, we fall prey to our own guilt and as a result get caught up in bondage and strife. The parable of the Unforgiving Servant tells us how guilt blinds us to the pride in us and makes us forget our own humanity, failures and the numerous times we have received forgiveness. In the end unforgiveness destroys us.

Let us completely and fully accept the grace of the Confessional frequently and unconditionally and forward this grace of the forgiveness we receive to others, that they too be released from bondage. Holy Spirit, help me to benefit from the Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession.

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