A reflection on the season of lent by Mother Maria-Michael Newe, OSB.
Lent is a time of great healing. We all carry wounds from way back and sometimes we ourselves become the wounds of another person. By what we say, what we do, the way we push other people’s buttons, we can become the visible wounds of another. The other, then, reacts to us from a past that isn’t there. If we are that wounded person, we must work to discover why we react so strongly to certain words, actions, etc. And having discovered the initial wound, if we don’t forgive that moment, it will follow us. It will show its face in those we meet everywhere reminding us of a hurt or pain that seemed very unjust and we do not want to let go of for justice’s sake.
This lent, let it be a time of healing so that you can return to the beauty of your baptism; that time before any of those wounds ever happened and you held within you the perfect life of God. At baptism, we held that life unmarred, breathed into us as when Adam was first brought to life. That same breath was breathed into us, and we began to breathe. But then pollution came in and the purifying of that pollution is difficult. What happens when things are polluted? They need to be filtered to come back to their purity.
Be aware of your own wounded-ness. Be aware of the things that hurt. This lent, take in a special way, the steps you need to let go of those wounds so that you can become more pure in your lives. Write them down, specifically take them with you and forgive them. Thus you will not only loosen yourself, but you will also loosen somebody else.
We too have the power to forgive. What you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, until you unbind it! What you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven, you won’t be dragging it up. Leave on earth what belongs to earth: sin. Bury it. Give it a moment to be done with and be free. What frees you and what frees me is forgiveness; not only that I’m forgiven, but I in turn forgive. And when a hurt happens again, the first thing I must do is forgive. Stand before it and choose to forgive.