I had a lovely drive home yesterday through the majestic Green Mountains of Vermont and the surprisingly still yellow maple stands near Troy, NY. Between periods of silence I listened to some of my favorite music. One song reminded me of our repetitive chanting from the weekend and then this morning of the gospel text for today where Jesus says, “If your brother sins, rebuke him and if he repents, forgive him. And if he wrongs you seven times in one day and returns to you seven times saying, ‘I am sorry,’ you should forgive him.” (LK 17)
The song is from Hawaii and is a simple repetition that runs on this CD almost 5 minutes. My guess is that it is meant to be sung for as long as it takes for the practice set out in the lyrics to be interiorized. It says simply I’m sorry. Forgive me. Thank you. I love you. As I began to listen to the song the first time, without reading the jacket for background, I kept waiting for a verse – more words to tell a story. As I listened longer, I began to feel the power of it and by the end I was deeply touched by the complete cycle of what should be the process in every transgression in relationship. In saying that, I am aware that some ruptures are difficult to bear and take longer to rectify, but the point is made – by the song and the gospel – that true sincerity in repentance deserves a response of forgiveness and the circle is not complete until we can say again, “I love you.”
The CD is from Jan Phillips and is called Always With You. You can also find it online as Ho’oponopono. Give it a listen and see if it deepens in you the complete movement of forgiveness.