Thursday, October 22, 2009

Thursday: What Was Your Profit?


How true! How true! "Do you think that I have come to establish peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division." Look at your local newspaper today. Listen to the radio or television. Look in your skeletons' closet! Gratefully there are radio stations, there are good books, there is nature around us that offer peace and calm.

If you read Luke entire gospel, Jesus makes clear that his mission is not necessarily to make people subject to peace! Rather his vision, the Father's will is to bring us from the experience of sinfulness through personal conversion to the gift of peace. St. Paul had his moment of personal conversion depicted above. Reflecting on his personal encounters with Jesus and the growing traditions of the formative years of the Church, continues the preach the mission, the message of Jesus Christ. What Paul describes as the cost of peace is conversion from the weaknesses of our human nature, from lawlessness to righteousness. As the apostle says, we must convert our slavery to impurity to slavery to righteousness.

Paul puts before us a question that should capture our attention: "But what profit did you get from the things of which you are now ashamed?" No doubt most people have their skeleton closets which, if opened to family and friends, would be a cause of great shame.

So, to achieve a peace of heart and mind, we need as individuals, as families, as nations, to end lawlessness and allow a metanoia, a change, to occur within our hearts.
Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.

Photo: Carravaggio, Conversion on the Way to Damascus, 1601