Tuesday of Easter Week - 2012
After reading the words of St. Luke in the first reading of today's liturgy, one might think the exhortation of St. Peter to his hearers that they seek repentance is a reading that should have been presented during the days of Lent.
As St. Luke recalls in the selected part of Acts, St. Peter's enthusiasm, so often exhibited in his interactions with Jesus during his ministry, "cut to the heart" those who heard him as he set about preaching about the recent death of Jesus. He reiterates what John the Baptist and Jesus himself had taught during their times of instruction. However, "repentance," as called for by these three is far beyond sadness for one's sins in the past.
There is a part of repentance that is a genuine leaning forward into the future. Peter proclaims the need for conversion. This concept point to how one should live once there is the admission of sin. The Greek word, "metanoia," is the apostle's intention in his preaching. It means much more than sorrow for past actions. Metanoia is the call to make a radical change in one's life where sin has played more than just a passing moment. Metanoia calls for a look at life in a new, grace-filled, way.
Now that we have completed the exercises of the Lenten season, it is time to assert firmly our intention to live the life that we know God is calling us to follow. Perhaps, during the sacrifices and prayers of Lent, there has been a recognition of a sinful habit or practice that has been holding us back from a genuine personal relationship with Jesus. Now is the time to make more than anything like a New Year's resolution. Now is the time for serious dialog with Jesus about the future. "This is what I know that I have to do for me to make possible a relationship that will strengthen one's abilities on the spiritual journey put before us by the Holy Spirit. If there is need for such leaning forward, imagine, just imagine how peace and happiness will come into one's heart and life.
In the days after the Resurrection, we are called to walk the walk that Jesus and his apostles have taught us. He is walking ahead of us each day. Will you create the second set of footprints in the picture above?