The Mercy of God
The Hardest Blessing by Jan Richardson
If we cannot lay aside the wound
then let us say it will not always bind us.
Let us say the damage
will not eternally determine our path.
Let us say the line of our life
will not forever follow
the tearing, the rending we have borne.
Let us say that forgiveness
can take some practice,
can take some patience,
can take a long and struggling time.
Let us say that to offer the hardest blessing
we will need the deepest grace, that to forgive
the sharpest pain we will need
the fiercest love, that to release
the ancient ache we will need
new strength for every day.
Let us say the wound
will not be our final home;
that through it runs a road,
a way we would not
have chosen but on which
we will finally see forgiveness,
so long practiced, coming toward us
shining with the joy so well deserved.
Sister Arlene Flaherty, O.P.