God’s mercy includes His infinite patience with us; He understands we are working to grow, working to be strong in living our faith. He doesn’t get tired of waiting for us to grow. Mercy—the grace of God’s willingness to love us for our goodness, despite our shortcomings—is steadfast. It never goes away.
God is more interested in our future than in our past. He takes past sins seriously but never as the last word. God wants each of us to become the best person he wills us to be and this requires conversion — a change of heart. Genuine mercy believes God’s grace has the power to transform us. God does not owe us forgiveness. Nor does God’s mercy license us to continue to sin — it demands a response to go and from now on sin no more (John 8:11). God’s mercy motivates us to do better.
God’s forgiveness is an easy thing to obtain. One needs only to ask. God forgives — he opens his loving arms and grants mercy. He gives love away.
We do not have to feel guilty over the reality of our human frailty. God is not going to sternly judge us. No, God is running down the road toward us, eager to wrap his arms around us and kiss it better. The enormity of God’s love, which is so vast it is beyond measure or comprehension, creates in us an awareness of the depth of our inadequacy. But that awareness does not trigger feelings of unworthiness. Rather it creates a sense of poverty which allows us to trust fully in God and willingly accept his bountiful love.
Forgiveness is one of the greatest gifts of the spiritual life. It enables us to be released from the sorrows of the past and reminds us to forgive others without hesitation, without question. Without question is hard to do, which only illustrates more clearly God’s love. Forgiveness simply says that we will never put someone out of our heart.