Thursday of the 14th week in the ordinary time of the year A

Gen. 44:18-21.23b-29;45:1-5    Mat. 10:7-15

Theme: The grace of forgiveness

The story of Joseph and his brothers continues to unfold in the 1st reading of today. The brothers went back to Joseph a second time and the situation made him reveal his identity to them. It was a sorrowful situation, and we were told that he cried bitterly and attracted the attention of other people. One can imagine the type of pain and sorrow that he went through as he met his brothers again, after they allowed their jealousy and envy to take a better part of them and they sold him into slavery. It is indeed a very painful and sad memory for him, as the victim in this situation.

However, the way he handled the situation is very important to all of us as Christians. He did not allow the pain and sense of betrayal to stop him from showing his brother’s love and forgiving them for what they did to him in the past. He was willing to let go and accept them back as his family. This is one of the main lessons for all of us from the 1st reading of today. As a result of what he experienced in the hands of his brothers, one would have expected that it would take him some time to forgive them of their actions against him, but that was not really the situation in this case. He has already processed the situation and accepted that it was designed by God, for the fulfilment of his plans in his life. By doing so, he went beyond the betrayal and pain that he went through and looked at the positive side in his situation.

In the same way, we are all encouraged today to pray for the grace for forgiveness, when other people hurt us and offend us. Also, that God will grant us the grace to see beyond the pain and sorrow it caused us and look out for the positives in that situation. One thing that is obvious in any difficult situation we pass through in life, is the fact that God is saying something to us. Joseph was able to discover his own, and probably that also helped him to forgive his brothers the way he did. Do not allow the pain to make you lose sight of what God is teaching you in that situation, there is always something to be learnt.

May God grant us the grace to let go and forgive those who have hurt us, in the name of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit. Amen. Peace be with you.

Thursday of the 14th week in the ordinary time of the year A, by Fr. Jude Ifeanyi Ifezime, C.S.Sp