For Us Sinners!

Matthew 9:13

Go and learn what this means, “I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.” For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.

It is the strange, counter-intuitive insight of Christianity that nobody is more needy of prayer than those who least deserve it.  Used to colorful Bible stories with charming Dickensian “sinners” with hearts of gold, we can forget that when Jesus described the people He came for as “sinners,” He meant it.  Real sinners.  People who were not merely scruffy and sweet, but real lowdown scum whom you and I would not want to be around at all because they have done despicable things in the dead of night that they don’t like to talk about.  It is for these people that God comes.  And these people are us.  You and me.  The glorious thing is that God has indeed come for us and that, so far from sending us from His sight, He has bid us to draw near.  Today, ask for His mercy.  It is the whole reason He came for us when He took flesh from Mary.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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