Learning to trust
The vast majority of us know of our need of mercy in our lives. When we experience forgiveness and mercy from our family and friends, or perhaps at times from acquaintances and strangers, it can come not only as a very healing surprise but it can at times alleviate, at least for a time, a certain type of inner loneliness an perhaps even isolation. We feel seen, understood and forgiven. However receiving mercy is not so much a problem. It is in the giving that we perhaps have trouble in living out.
We seek mercy for different reasons. One reason is that our personal understanding of what we did to hurt another was based on a misapprehension and if only the other party would listen to us, then al would be forgiven. We would be seen and understood and receive mercy. The other is that we can at times do things to our loved one, co-workers and acquaintances, which if experienced by us would be felt as cruel, unjust and damaging to our relationship with them. Trust would be either lost or lessened to such a degree that communication would be difficult. This often happens because we can lack sensitivity and an understanding of what Jesus meant when he spoke of the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. It is easy to objectify others and lose the connection and the sensitivity that they are like us and are not objects to be used and set aside. This is done for the most part on an unconscious level and not from bad will. Self centeredness is a given and it takes a lifetime to outgrow, at least when it causes harm to others
So relationships with others can be tricky from both sides. What about our relationship with God? We often make God out to be a very big person like us in many ways, which can be the cause of many problems in our ability to trust. When offended we can be difficult, and it often takes time to get to the point of actually forgiving. Even then it can only be a partial rendering of mercy. Which is not mercy at all, though I believe we do the best we can. We may understand our own weakness to a certain degree, but may have no comprehension of the weaknesses’ of others. We react and allow our own fears to wall us in from others. The only way to overcome this tendency to react is to make a conscious choice to trust, which is not easy. We react, so it follows that if we think God is just like us, just bigger, then we may believe that God reacts as well. So trust is difficult and must be chosen consciously, it is a free choice, often difficult. Idols are hard to let go of.
God is not a big person in the sky, now does God react. Jesus is merciful because he sees all and understands all. When we pray the chaplet we are praying for all of mankind, it is a universal prayer, both for those living today, who have lived in the past and will have life in the future. All are brought before the Father for healing and mercy. Think about the words, their intention.
Most of us have trouble trusting. This prayer is one of trust, a letting go of fear and also slowly allowing this prayer to heal us from the damage that our own reactions to others can cause us. We pray for enemies, our friends who have betrayed, for those who have abused us in any way. We pray for all those who do evil, we ask mercy for all, and yes for all who are dying. In this we join our prayers to Jesus Christ, the savior of the world. The more we understand this prayer, the quicker will our trust in God grow and deepen. We learn to show mercy to others, because we know of our own need for mercy. We do not demand that others be better than us. This is not easy, but struggle is a sign of inner self knowledge, which leads to deeper compassion and empathy for others and yes for our-selves.