The devotion to St. Jude is a profoundly meaningful way to connect with God’s mercy. St. Jude’s intercession on behalf of our petitions puts mercy at the center in our petitions for relief, healing, and peace.
Compassion defines the mercy we experience in devotion to St. Jude. We seek and find in him a deep awareness of our needs, and we believe in his desire to help us navigate life with hope. His compassion mirrors Christ’s, inviting us to see beyond our own difficulties to focus on the difficulties of others—this part of our character informs the way we feel and think about grievances against us, and it informs the way we respond . . . which ideally is to work toward forgiveness.
We know God doesn’t get tired of forgiving us when we offer Him our contrite recognition that we have fallen short. But sometimes we are the ones who can get caught up in our day-to-day issues and forget to ask for forgiveness! It is so key that we trust God’s mercy and practice it both ways—asking for His forgiveness when needed and bringing a merciful character to others in our lives.
“Mercy, peace, and love be yours in abundance.”
There are times when even our most open extension of a merciful attitude toward someone who has hurt us will not be met with understanding or acceptance. We cannot control the openness of others, but each act of mercy on our part still opens our heart more and more to Jesus. These decisions of ours, these moments which can sometimes be difficult, are actually like prayers of trust in God’s message of His mercy directly to each of us. We are working for a generosity of heart, as God has promised is His offer to us whenever we ask for forgiveness and the strength to continue to grow in our faith.
Prayer to St. Jude is a path to connect again to our commitment to divine mercy. One of the great acts of mercy we can give to others is to pray for them, both as a help for their difficulties and as a help for our relationship with them. The presence of St. Jude in our daily lives strengthens us in our resolve to weigh sympathy over offense, and love over all.