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Last night I had a lovely Incredible Hulk Dad moment. We were walking to the car after our CG workout and we had all the children. One of my boys decided to walk while being on my phone, which was my fault to begin with with letting him have it. When we got to the car I told him to hand it to me and then I took it from him. He then proceeded to run around me, into the street and I tried to grab him. At the same time, an SUV was coming up the street and my little guy jetted out right in front of it. I grabbed him by whatever I could reach, which happened to be his shirt around his neck. I then threw him back toward our car and got in the way of the SUV. I then went off yelling at him and demanding that he not be upset, but be appreciative for me "saving" his life. Rather than be appreciative, he became more and more resilient the more I screamed and yelled. After a few minutes of cooling off, I then went to him and gave him a hug that would crush his little back and told him how much I loved him and how I'm not ready for him to ever be gone. He then cried and said he was sorry and that he loved me.
St. Paul writes in Romans saying, " Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God's kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? " (Romans 2:4). We have been rescued, saved from the jaws of hell and the devil's snares. Does God then yell at us, abuse us, and guilt us into being appreciative and living Him? Does God scare us into repentance? Does God act like I did right after saving my boy from the SUV? Well, St. Paul says no. It is not God's wrath and Almighty anger that lead us into a repentant life, bur rather the promise of God's mercy and His kindness towards us. We don't love God because we are scared about what He could do to us. No, we love God because He first and always loves us in Christ Jesus our Lord. Thank God He isn't like me, or like any of us, meaning we threaten people, blow up, and fail miserably everyday at being loving people. God isn't like us, no. He is mercy and love, absolute forgiveness for you and for me. We repent of our sins, not because we are afraid God will punish us, but because we know God will forgive us and love us in spite of our countless failures and mistakes.
After you've sinned, like I did in my blow up with my son, you feel about an inch tall. You feel like you're the worst person on the face of the earth. And guess what? You are and so am I. But guess what is even better? Jesus died for the worst people. He died for you and for me. He died because we blow up, go green, and loose our cool. He died because we turn into Mr Hyde at the blink of an eye. Jesus became all our failure in order that we may receive all the benefits of His successful death and glorious resurrection. So, when you sin, which you will again, take heart in the assurance that Jesus died for you, rose for you, and forgives you unconditionally and forever. You are Christ's and He is yours forever. Live in that peace and joy my friends, and you will know that it means to have a quiet mind and a peaceful conscience.
Peace be with you. May the devil be silenced, the world be hushed, and the Old Adam be drowned anew so that you hear only the peaceful voice of your Savior Jesus who says, "I love you. I forgive you. I claim you as My own forever," Amen.