"Have mercy on me, O God, in Your goodness; in the greatness of Your compassion wipe out my offense. Thoroughly wash me from my guilt and of my sin cleanse me." —Psalm 51:3-4
The Lord "wants all men to be saved and come to know the truth" (1 Tm 2:4). "It is no part of your heavenly Father's plan that a single one of these little ones shall ever come to grief" (Mt 18:14). God wants us to be with Him forever in heaven so much that "He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him may not die but may have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him" (Jn 3:16-17).
However, God, Who is Love (1 Jn 4:16), will not force His love on us. We must freely accept or reject Him. If we choose to reject Him, in His mercy He will give us the wages of our sins (Rm 6:23) so that we may see the consequences of our actions and realize we must repent. For example, when Miriam sinned by being jealous of Moses, the Lord let her become a leper and thereby called her to repentance (Nm 12:10).
If we persist in sinning and in refusing to repent, we choose not to love God Who is Love. We choose a loveless life forever, that is, we put ourselves in hell. Then Jesus will be forced to say again: "Let them go their way; they are blind leaders of the blind" (Mt 15:14).
Don't choose the selfishness of everlasting hell. Choose to love.
Prayer: Jesus, may I let You save me.
Promise: "Moses cried to the Lord, 'Please, not this! Pray, heal her!' " —Nm 12:13
Praise: Bonita's family was displaced from their home by fire for the second time in five years. She continues to focus on praising and thanking God for His mercy, and refuses to yield to bitterness.
Reference: (For related teaching, order our leaflet, Accepting Jesus as Lord, Savior, and God.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, February 22, 1999
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 24, 1999