“Do I not rejoice when they turn from their evil way and live?” – Ez 18:23b

Who knows more of our “evil ways” than God – the one who created us, not out of obligation or default, but out of an intentional and profound desire to create us?

Today’s readings remind me of all the wickedness, crimes, evil, pain, sin, hurt, and rejection of Love that I choose and cause (and see in the world). If I read these passages in a space where I question God’s love for me, it’s very tempting for me to fight with God. I am tempted to scream, “I get it! I fall short in so many ways. Would you please just leave me alone about it now? Thanks!”

When I open myself and presume the loving and faithful God I know, however, my response is different. In outlining all the darkness that is in me, the difficulties of being what I am created to be, God is reminding me of God’s faithfulness and love. In this, God says to me, “I get it. It’s hard to choose to love. You’ve messed up in many ways. And you may have even caused irreparable damage. But still, come.” Those steps I take toward God – when I “turn away” from what I was doing and live – that’s when God rejoices.

May God grant me the grace to turn toward God, especially when I cause hurt. May I turn toward God, step by step, and be an opportunity for God to rejoice in guiding me back to Love.

Vivian Valencia