What’s in you?
14 Then Jesus called the crowd to him once more and said to them, “Listen to me, all of you, and understand. 15 There is nothing that goes into you from the outside which can make you ritually unclean. Rather, it is what comes out of you that makes you unclean.” Mark 7:14-15 (TEV)
It is necessary that you be a “man of God,” a man of interior life, a man of prayer and of sacrifice. Your apostolate must be the overflow of your life “within.” (1)
In the last couple of days, I have heard a lot of people talking about the threats to Christianity, and indeed to Christians. I’ve heard talk of teaching pastors to defend the faith ( using a very misguided translation of St Peter’s words about being ready to give the reason for the hope we have). It’s as if these challenges to a Christian could possibly remove their faith, or break them.
That attitude is not unlike the attitude of the Pharisees in Mark 7. They spent all the time working on the outside appearance of their faith. They want it to appear perfect, with no cracks, no gaps, not even with the slightest hint of guilt. Except of course, we are all dirty, and whether we want to admit it or not – we are all weak and broken and needing to be cleansed – from the inside out, not the outside in.
The outside isn’t our threat – the inside is.
But just like that – it is not the inside that is the source of our holiness, even though we are called to a pure interior life. It’s not something we can do on our own, but it is something that is done to us. Hear the prophetic words of Ezekiel,
“ 25 I will sprinkle clean water on you and make you clean from all your idols and everything else that has defiled you. 26 I will give you a new heart and a new mind. I will take away your stubborn heart of stone and give you an obedient heart. 27 I will put my spirit in you and will see to it that you follow my laws and keep all the commands I have given you. 28 Then you will live in the land I gave your ancestors. You will be my people, and I will be your God. 29 I will save you from everything that defiles you! Ezekiel 36:25-29a (TEV)
This is what it is all about – this interior life that St. Josemaria speaks of so clearly. It is Christ in you, the hope of glory. It is the promise of His incarnation in us – as we are united to His death and resurrection. It is the gift of the Holy Spirit – dwelling in us, and the communion that occurs. That is the spring of a life from which no longer comes that which perverts us, but proof of God’s work in us – the fount of holiness.
So look within – not to see your own internal clock – not to see your own desires – but to see the love of the One who desires that you are transformed, repentant, made alive… and works in you……
and find that His mission, HIs apostolate – that even as the Father sent Jesus – so we are sent – to bring life and a walk with God to those he died to save.!
Lord Have mercy on us!
(1) Escriva, Josemaria (2010-11-02). The Way (Kindle Locations 2226-2228). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.
Posted on July 23, 2013, in Devotions and tagged baptism, Cleanliness, Concordia Lutheran Church Cerritos, disciple, discipline, Holiness, Jesus, life, St. Josemaria Escriva, The Holy Spirit. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.