Repentance

Repentance and Transformation – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Repentance and Transformation – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

“When men’s thoughts cease to resemble God’s thoughts, their conduct ceases to be godly. This, in a nutshell, is the importance of the New Testament doctrine of repentance: it is a calling of men’s minds to be patterned after God’s, in order that their conduct may be in keeping with his will and that they may participate in his reign.”

More

True Repentance – Gospel in Preparation for the Second Sunday in Advent

True Repentance – Gospel in Preparation for the Second Sunday in Advent

This is what we are called to turn and return to, not just once, but over and over again—whether we’ve completely fallen off the wagon (or never even gotten on it), or “simply” find ourselves struggling to trust in the goodness and character of God in the face of life’s struggles. True repentance and conversion don’t just happen once. They are a life-long process of constantly directing and re-directing ourselves towards God, who loves us more than we can fathom and who longs to fill every valley, make straight the crooked and smooth the rough. It is only as we turn away from the things that hurt us or harm us and turn toward Him and His love in trust and surrender that this healing, this salvation (the two words are often used interchangeably in the Gospels) can actually begin to take place.

More

All Love – First Reading in Preparation for the Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

All Love – First Reading in Preparation for the Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

We come as a throng, but he invites us one by one. He comes for each of us as if we were the one sheep that had wandered away from a flock of a hundred. He calls each of us by name: Simon, Levi, Mary, Zacchaeus, Fred. He bids each of us to rise, leave behind our exile, and follow him home. And, in some great sense, from the moment we take his hand, we are already home for we are with him.

The good news of the gospel begins with the good news to every person on earth that their exile is over:

“Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned, that she has received double from the Lord’s hand for all her sins” (Isaiah 40:10)

More

A Life of Repentance – Gospel in Preparation for the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

“…repentance isn’t just about the first time that we turn away from a life ruled by sin and towards a life ruled by Christ; it is about every time that we do so. The Greek word for repentance literally means to change one’s mind (metanoia, meta- to change; nous-mind), to turn away not just from sinful actions themselves, but from all the disordered motives, desires and passions that drive them in order that we might turn towards the mercy, healing and New Life that are offered in Christ….Thus it is that, one by one, the power of every unclean spirit is destroyed and the shackles of our bondage to decay are shattered, and we are freed to surrender ourselves to ‘the Love that wants us to be fully alive.'”

More

Come to the Banquet! – Gospel for the Twenty Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Come to the Banquet! – Gospel for the Twenty Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time

“It is true that the door is open to all men, but when they come they must bring a life which seeks to fit the love that has been given them. Grace is not only a gift; it is a grave responsibility. A man cannot go on living the life he lived before he met Jesus Christ. He must be clothed in a new purity and a new holiness and a new goodness. The door is open, but the door is not open for the sinner to come and remain a sinner, but for the sinner to come and become a saint.” –William Barclay

More

When Yes Means Yes – Gospel for the Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

When Yes Means Yes – Gospel for the Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

The challenge of this passage for us today, N. T. Wright tells us, is “to make sure we are responding to Jesus, allowing him to confront us at any point where we have been like the second son and said ‘Yes’ to God while in fact going off in the other direction.” (Matthew For Everyone, V2, p.77) We should not be afraid to do this for Jesus does not want to confront us in order to judge us, but rather to save us. The implication of this passage is not a final condemnation of Israel’s leaders, but a final appeal for their repentance: “If he waited for the harlots and tax collectors to repent and believe, and they had responded, might the priests not follow suit? The arms of divine mercy are still open.”( Michael Green, Matthew, p227)

More