Scripture Reading: Matthew 23: 28
St. Padre Pio de Pietrelcina says. “The life a Christian is nothing but a perpetual struggle against self; there is no flowering of the soul to the beauty of perfection except at the price of pain” God never forces anybody to serve Him. He enjoys a willing and sincere fellowship with Him. No wonder, Joshua, conscious of the grave need to have sincere fellowship with God reminded his people to “remember what the Lord did for them” and so he encouraged them to “… serve the Lord in sincerity and truth” (Joshua 24:14). That is exactly what God looks at. God is not concerned about the hand you lift up in the Church. He is not concerned about your speaking in tongues; even your preaching may not move Him, if your sincerity is not confirmed before Him.
All of those things we do are physical appearances and displays that never bear real witness to our righteousness to God. God said to Samuel when he went to anoint David: “…I do not judge as people judge. They look at the outward appearance, but I look at the heart.’’ (1 Sam. 16:7b). As a business person, preacher, student and so on, try to be truthful with God. He knows your thoughts and even your most private actions (Matt. 6:4, 6; Ps.139). You can never deceive Him. Even if you succeed in deceiving men of God and the brethren, you can never succeed in doing that to God.
Apostle Paul wrote on this matter and said: ‘But the solid foundation that God has laid cannot be shaken; and on it are written these words: “The Lord knows those who are His” and “all who say that they belong to the Lord must turn away from wrongdoing.” (2 Tim. 2:19). Hypocrisy is not merely about telling lies, it is a lifestyle. We are all guilty of this once in a while; so that we don’t leave it as being addressed to particular people. It is common for human beings to seek recognition and praise and the consequence of this is that we tend to say and do those things people expect of us. By this, we simply seek to impress people. This is hypocrisy and Jesus is today advising us to shun all those things especially in religious matters. God searches the heart and not really all those who are regular to Church or prompt to Church activities will make heaven. Jesus gives a standard: “doing the will of God” (Matt.7:21). Let us try and live authentic Christian lives because that is where our salvation lies.
MASS: WHITE Rom 11:1-2a.11-12.25-29; Ps 94:12-13a. 14-15.17-18(R.14a); Accl Matt 11:29ab; Lk 14:1.7-11 ST. CHARLES BORROMEO, BP (MEMORIAL)
- “I adore your eternal and impenetrable plans; for love of you, I submit to you with all my heart. I offer you the sacrifice of my entire being in union with that of Jesus, my Divine Saviour” Blessed James Alberione
Exercise: Take some time to examine where your actions show hypocrisy.
Meditation: James 3:17