"On the contrary, we are invited to toughen our hands, steady our knees and have courage and not be afraid because God always shows the greatness of his mercy."
Perhaps people may think their sins are so great that it is impossible to start over, he said. "You're wrong. You can. Why? Because God is waiting for you, he loves you," is merciful and will give the strength needed for a fresh start and to overcome all pain and sorrow, the pope said.
"This true joy even remains during times of trial, suffering, too, because it is not superficial, but lies deep in the person who trusts in God and confides in him."
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Pope Francis gives us an important insight regarding our own weaknesses and sins sometimes getting in the way and becoming an occasion for discouragement. This only makes things worse, when we get discouraged in the spiritual life. It causes us to close in on ourselves and be useless to both God and neighbor, spiraling into a sort of wretched self-pity, which is really an insidious form of pride.
Instead, we need to cast our selves headlong into a loving trust and abandonment to God's providential love. God uses us in our weakness as instruments of His grace if we but take our eyes off ourselves and keep them riveted … on Christ. How can we doubt His love when we see Him on the cross? Let us instead fly on the "wings of confidence and love", as St. Therese said. Peace+ DDG