Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Within You Are Full
"So you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity." Gospel of St. Matthew 23:28
I love this section of St. Matthew's gospel because (though Jesus here is addressing the Pharisees specifically) it sends many flaming arrows that can potentially pierce and purify the heart and intentions. Scripture is truly meant for US who live now; it is ever timeless as there is always a way we enter and are truly included in this living history.
It is often that I see within myself a desire to appear better than I KNOW I actually am. I am a hopeless, hapless sinner on so many levels. Do I not daily deny Jesus Christ in some way? Do I not gladly adhere myself to the "false-positive" view that others often, so mistakenly yet so graciously offer me? Am I not deceptive to so often consider my outward actions and yet too frequently neglect to rely on God's mercy in my heart? How often I forget that God examines the heart! It is only when I remember and admit my weaknesses that I have any hope of being deeply changed.
All of this, of course, is not opening the door to excuse myself and say, therefore, "Hey, I'm a sinner...it's human nature..." and leave well enough alone. This mindset surely leads to spiritual death. On the contrary I must yield myself always to the fiery gaze of the divine physician, that I may truly be healed, strengthened and prepared to assist in the salvation of others. This way of seeing leads to freedom~ it brings peace. To see oneself as you truly ARE before God~ a sinner too yes~ but more importantly entirely loved, cherished and even revered by your Heavenly Father. This is genuine freedom.