The victim has been redeemed

by Guest Contributor

Be on your guard! If another disciple sins, you must rebuke the offender, and if there is repentance, you must forgive. And if the same person sins against you seven times a day, and turns back to you seven times and says, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive.”
Luke 17:3-4



Peace can be found in hurt through healing. Forgiveness is for one person to face a person that they’ve hurt, and for the other to release his debt. Both are brave actions, and both parties are called to put aside their pride and admit their wrongdoing and their vulnerabilities.

The deepest sufferings are from carrying a debt you cannot possibly pay back. And the deepest sufferings can also come from realizing that you’ve caused a hurt to someone that cannot be made well. So who do we turn to right the wrong?

Jesus is the perfect third party. But how, especially when these so-called “debts that cannot be paid back” are things like rape, murder, permanent injury, trauma due to war, etc. These are deeply wounding injuries that the victim and their loved ones carry for the rest of their lives. You can see how the perpetrator will never be able to repay their victims in full.

It is in these moments where Jesus’ words, “nothing is impossible for Me”, come to life. Jesus is the mediator and the compensator. In Fr. Carlos’ writings about forgiveness, the victim first acknowledges that a wrong has been done to them, and that the offender cannot possibly pay back the debt. Now comes the critical part; the victim must release the debt from the offender, and place it on Jesus: “Jesus, I release [offender’s name] from his debt to me and I give that debt to you.” The debt being released, the victim continues to say: “In place of that debt I ask You to give [offender’s name] a blessing instead.”

So what happens here is, Jesus becomes the center. Jesus takes on the heavy debt on His Cross, so that it may be repaid through His redemption. The victim is no longer a victim, for they have been redeemed; their heroic action to forgive takes the debt from someone who cannot pay to someone who can. The offender, in turn, are granted a blessing in their heart (whether they know it or not), and God will begin working in their lives. They too are changed; no longer do they have to identify with the crime (and therefore do worse crimes), the victim has given their heart over to Jesus, who can turn the hardest of hearts.

Read more about this from Fr. Carlos’ site; Pilgrimage of Mercy. Knowing how to forgive and be forgiven breaks the cycle of evil, and brings all people back to Jesus.

“Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.”

Though Christmas day is past. We continued to encourage you to continue visiting,as a source of inspiration and spiritual nourishment. It can even be used to inform your New Year’s resolution!