In all the things going on in the upper room, we learn one important truth about the heart of our Lord Jesus:
He never shuts his door in anyone’s face. No one is ever locked out. He never gives up reaching out even to those with the hardest of hearts.
Such is the mercy of Jesus. Such is the mercy of God.
There is an interesting story from Bruce Marshall’s novel, To Every Man a Penny.
A priest, Fr. Gaston, is listening to a soldier’s confession, but unable to get him to express sorrow over his sins. The priest is in a quandary! He can’t forgive the soldier’s sins unless there is repentance.
“How can I repent?” the soldier asked the priest. “It was something I enjoyed, and if I had the chance I would do it again, even now.”
Father Gaston wants to absolve the man, so he asks, “But are you sorry that you are not sorry?” The soldier says, “Yes, I am sorry that I am not sorry.” And there, Father Gaston finds the opening that allows him to give the man absolution.
When the soldier apologizes for not being sorry, the door of his heart was opened just a crack, but it allowed God’s forgiveness to come in.
This story is mentioned by Pope Francis in his latest book The Name of God Is Mercy. The Holy Father teaches that such is God’s mercy: It seeks only the smallest opening, and finding it, His mercy rushes in.
Such is the mercy of God.
Image source: wikipedia.org