Similarly, I believe that actions of mercy and compassion come from appropriating forgiveness - our own feeling of deeply, fully forgiven.
One way I've said this before is "in order to exhale generosity, we need to inhale gratitude. In order to exhale compassion, we need to inhale forgiveness."
But appropriating forgiveness is difficult. In Sunday's Gospel, we hear the story of Peter wanting to know what the limits or outer boundaries of forgiveness are."How often do I need to forgive someone, Jesus? As many as seven times?" he asks."Not seven, but seventy-seven," Jesus answers.(What's interesting is the Greek that's translated "seventy-seven" can also be translated seventy-times-seven. So when Peter says "do I really have to forgive seven times?", Jesus says "no, 77, or 490 times!")
The point -- espec…