What route are you taking?
Saint Augustine states, “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.” God created us to know Him, love Him, serve Him, and be happy with Him forever in Heaven. We realize how hard it is to even imagine reaching the destination we are designed for. No matter how hard we try or what penance we take, we can never face the justice of God. Our all-knowing God in His great compassion has shown us a way to blindly trust in His mercy – The Divine Mercy.
How can we receive God’s Mercy?
God’s Mercy is God’s compassion excusing us from the punishment we truly deserve. We can count on God’s mercy by acknowledging our shortcomings, seeking God’s forgiveness, forgiving our brethren, and doing penance for ourselves and others. In the Bible, we come across a Pharisee and a tax collector who went up into the temple to pray. The Pharisee tried to justify himself before God listing out his merits, but the poor tax collector recognized his flaws, with a contrite heart sought God’s Mercy. God desires a repentant heart and an attitude of humility which the tax collector had. It is to such as these that He opened the depths of His Merciful Heart through St. Faustina.
Let the greatest sinners place their trust in My mercy. They have the right before others to trust in the abyss of My mercy. My daughter writes about My mercy towards tormented souls. Souls that make an appeal to My mercy delight Me. To such souls, I grant even more graces than they ask. I cannot punish even the greatest sinner if he makes an appeal to My compassion, but on the contrary, I justify him in My unfathomable and inscrutable mercy. Write: before I come as a just Judge, I first open wide the door of My mercy. He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice…” (Diary, 1146)
The shortcuts to big promises
Jesus, who is always true to His promises, has shown us some shortcuts to enter the abyss of His Mercy. St. Faustina had several mystical encounters with Jesus. Through these, Jesus expressed His Heart’s desires and appointed her as the Apostle of Divine Mercy to spread the devotion of Divine Mercy throughout the world. He attached several beautiful promises to those who trust in God’s Mercy and promote it. Let us take a quick look at them.
1. The Chaplet of Divine Mercy
In one encounter, Jesus taught her a quick, simple, and powerful prayer, the chaplet of Divine Mercy. Jesus said that if we recite this chaplet for ourselves or for others, He would stand as our defense at our final judgment. He would show great Mercy and stand as a Merciful Savior and not as a Just Judge. When hardened sinners pray this, Jesus would fill their souls with peace, and the hour of their death will be a happy one. Jesus also promised that all our prayers made through the chaplet will be answered, if it is compatible with God’s will.
2. Divine Mercy 3 O’Clock Prayer
Jesus expressed His desire that whenever we hear the clock strike the third hour, we should remember the passion of Christ for the salvation of the world because it was the hour of grace for the whole world when mercy triumphed over justice. Jesus promised that in this hour we can obtain everything for ourselves and for others simply by asking.
3. The Feast of Divine Mercy
During Jesus’ revelations to Saint Faustina, He asked that a feast day be dedicated to the Divine Mercy and that this feast be celebrated on the Sunday after Easter. Jesus promised the soul that went to Confession and received Holy Communion on Divine Mercy Sunday, would obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment. This same grace is received in any adult Baptism. The soul is washed clean with the complete remission of sins and punishment, even if the soul is in a state of imperfect sorrow and repentance for sin. If we die in this state of grace, we avoid purgatory and go straight to heaven.
“I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and a shelter for all souls, and especially for poor sinners. … The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment. On that day all the divine floodgates through which graces flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet. … It is My desire that it be solemnly celebrated on the first Sunday after Easter. Mankind will not have peace until it turns to the Fount of My mercy. (Diary 699)
4. The Image of Divine Mercy
Several times, Jesus told St. Faustina of His desire for The Divine Mercy Image to be venerated publicly, especially on Divine Mercy Sunday so that every soul may know about it.
“I promise that the soul that will venerate this image (of Divine Mercy) will not perish. I also promise victory over (its) enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I Myself will defend it as My own glory.” (Diary 48)Now that we have learned how Jesus wants us to be drawn to His compassionate heart with complete trust in His Mercy, let us deliberately make every effort to take the route of ‘MERCY’ and grow in our devotion to the Divine Mercy. Let us initiate the step to daily recite the Divine Mercy chaplet at least when our clock strikes 3:00 PM/AM, have a Divine Mercy image in our homes for veneration, and celebrate the Feast of Divine Mercy in the way that Jesus desires. Once we decide to take these baby steps towards the compassionate heart of Jesus, God will do the rest. He will pick us up to a new height of glory, beyond our understanding.
“…Say unceasingly the chaplet that I have taught you. Whoever will recite it will receive great mercy at the hour of death…”(Diary, 687) “