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Monday, March 13, 2006

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Daniel 9:4-10
Psalm 79
Luke 6:36-38

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forgive to give

"Give, and it shall be given to you." —Luke 6:38

When we give, we open the door to let the Lord lavish His love on us. The Lord desires to bless us "good measure pressed down, shaken together, running over" (Lk 6:38). Yet He does not force His love on us. We must open up to His love. By giving, we tell God how open we are to receiving. "For the measure you measure with will be measured back to you" (Lk 6:38).

Most people think of themselves as "generous," but this is often not completely accurate. The financial problems of churches, the lack of religious vocations, and our perfunctory "celebrations" of Mass are signs that we have trouble giving. This is to be expected because God's kind of giving goes against our selfish human nature. When we admit our problems in giving, we can ask God to help us.

Giving is not primarily a matter of finances but often of forgiveness. That's why the Lord commands us to pardon one another before commanding us to give (Lk 6:37). In the verse recited just before pardoning, Jesus commands us not to judge or condemn others (Lk 6:37). The keys to giving are forgiving and not judging or condemning.

Prayer:  Father, may I see reluctance to give freely as a symptom of unforgiveness.

Promise:  "...Lord, great and awesome God, You Who keep Your merciful covenant toward those who love You and observe Your commandments!" —Dn 9:4

Praise:  Charles sings not only in his own church's choir but also glorifies God by singing in an interdenominational one.

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our leaflet, Unforgiveness is the Cause, or on audio AV 41-1 or video V-41. Also order our leaflet, Fourteen Questions on Forgiveness, or on audio AV 106A-1, AV 106A-3, AV 106B-1 or video V-106A.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Daniel E. Pilarczyk, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 16, 2005

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