"Alas, we are being punished because of our brother." —Genesis 42:21
When something bad happens to you, do you feel you're being punished? The Lord may not be punishing you, but you may be punishing yourself because of guilt. For example, Joseph's brothers were still arguing and feeling guilty thirty years after attempting to kill Joseph and finally selling him into slavery (Gn 42:22).
Jesus wants to free you from the torture-chamber of guilt (see Mi 7:18-19). Maybe you feel guilty of sexual sin. If you have not confessed your sin, do so in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Pray with David: "Have mercy on me, O God, in Your goodness; in the greatness of Your compassion wipe out my offense. Thoroughly wash me from my guilt and of my sin cleanse me" (Ps 51:3-4). Ask for healing. Dump all your garbage not on yourself but on Calvary (Zec 5:6).
When Satan tries to talk you out of your forgiveness and freedom, refuse to meet with him. Refer him to Jesus and curtly inform him that you are not at liberty to discuss your sin and guilt since they are now in Jesus' hands. That will shut him up.
Your heavenly Father says you're forgiven. The blood of Jesus says you're forgiven. The Spirit of Truth says you're forgiven. God's Church agrees. You're forgiven, washed clean, and free from guilt.
Prayer: Clean at last! Lord God almighty, clean at last!
Promise: Jesus "summoned His twelve disciples and gave them authority to expel unclean spirits and to cure sickness and disease of every kind." —Mt 10:1
Praise: St. Benedict died standing before the altar having just received Holy Communion. Praise the mercy of God!
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape Guilt, Guilt Trips, and Scrupulosity on audio AV 105-1 or video V-105.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 22, 2007
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