One of the ways God reveals Himself as “almighty” is by being forgiving and sparing. Our Collect for the 26th Ordinary Sunday underscores this:
Deus, qui omnipotentiam tuam parcendo maxime et miserando manifestas, gratiam tuam super nos indesinenter infunde, ut, ad tua promissa currentes, caelestium bonorum facias esse consortes.
A consors is someone with whom you share a common destiny (cum, “with” + sors “lot, fate, destiny”).
Current ICEL translation: “O God, who manifest your almighty power above all by pardoning and showing mercy, bestow, we pray, your grace abundantly upon us and make those hastening to attain your promises heirs to the treasures of heaven.”
We can slip into the trap of associating justice only with the exercise of power. The affirmation of God’s mercy does not diminish God’s justice.
For God, balancing mercy and justice is no problem at all. For us, however, it is exceedingly difficult. Our will and our limited intellect are wounded. We struggle with passions and emotions. We oscillate between being just and then being merciful. Bringing the two streams of mercy and justice together in the right way is a tremendous challenge. When we encounter a person who does this well, we hold him up as an example of wisdom because he seems to act more clearly as an image of God.
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