Today at Mass, we learned that a priest in our archdiocese violated his vow of chastity, and has resigned from his parish and gone into spiritual counseling and therapy. It hit like a ton of bricks. And while still being a tough subject, it holds within it many lessons.
Two Corinthians 4:7 says "But we have this treasure in clay jars, so that the extraordinary power belongs to God and does not come from us." What a reminder. All of us are sinners, yet when someone we hold in such high regard falls so far, it can be hard to think it is even possible. Especially our priests - the men who stand in the stead of Christ on earth, and whom we look to for help to get to Heaven. Yet this position does not make them untouchable by the devil. On the contrary, it makes them bigger targets.
Today's readings speak of David. There he was, a man after God's own heart, at rock bottom. The prophet speaks of David's sins - he had not only committed adultery with a woman, but he also killed the woman's husband in order to hide his guilt. Seeing the error of his ways, he comes to God for forgiveness and, because God loves him, he is forgiven. Because this is God - loving father. I know from experience that the worse thing to experience from my Dad is disappointment. When he knows I can do better and I chose worse. This surely is how God feels all the time. We constantly are saying "No" to Him by sinning, and how disappointing it must be to look at how much good we could be doing if we only would see His amazing plan.
We all stumble. We all fall. Most importantly, we all can be forgiven. There is no sin to big for God's incredible mercy. All we have to do is receive His forgiveness is come with a contrite heart and a desire to sin no more. The biggest repair job comes when we have to ask forgiveness from those who we hurt, and be able to forgive ourselves.
It's a long process and a hard recovery. Was it in God's plans? Is sin ever what God wants? No - but I can't wait to see the amazing beauty that He'll bring out of our mistakes. He's pretty good at that, you know.