“The Lord is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger and abounding in love” (Ps 103:8).
Our Father is gracious.
Out of His abundance He fills us with all that He has prepared for us. Our whole existence is an expression of His love that reaches down to us – fallible and limited human beings – to lift us up to Him. Our Father did not create us because He needed us. No, it was a free act of love to call His creatures to life, to give them everything they need to live and to fill them with Himself.
Our Father is merciful.
He knows the weakness and sin of human beings who have lost Paradise, but He does not wish to hold them responsible for their faults, but to forgive them. Again and again He offers mercy through His Son. Anyone, no matter how burdened with guilt, can be converted and receive forgiveness for their sins.
Our Father is slow to anger.
He waits patiently for us and is always ready to give us the time we need for repentance until He can welcome us into His eternal kingdom. Where we ourselves would have given up long ago, the long-suffering of the Father is still there and able to wait. It is difficult to escape the long-suffering love of our Father; it is too great! Only when we consciously close ourselves to it can we miss it.
Our Father is abounding in love.
Here we meet the majesty of God, who, although He sits on His throne in incomparable glory, reaches down to man with infinite mercy (cf. Ps 112:5). Although conscious of His own glory, our heavenly Father is pleased to embrace us with His goodness, to call us to be close to Him and even to put His dwelling place in us.