God wants me to change. God wants me to repent. God wants me to change my ways. I need conversion. I need to change. When I come to the realization that there is something that needs to change in my life, I face a choice. I can change the superficial, or I can really work deep within myself to change the evil that is in my heart.
That is the focus in today’s readings. We can focus, as the Pharisees did, on the external actions of little consequence. Or, we can seek to really change ourselves into really better people. This is the change that really is difficult. It is not easy to change our hearts. It is not easy to change our attitudes, those attitudes that keep us away from Christ.
But today we are challenged to seek the change that comes deep in our hearts. We are called to cast away very difficult things. The gospel list covers just about every way in which we can be away from God. It covers just about every way we can abuse others, treating them in a way like objects. We can see people only as a means to get what I want, as objects, slaves, that exist for my pleasure, or we can see them as people made in the image and likeness of God.
The purpose of a life of faith is to live in a real way this relationship with Jesus in an authentic way. We are called to imitate Jesus and his attitude toward people because he is the Son of God. We are called to get to know him better so that we are able to grow in faith. Today, remember the first word of the gospel. Repent.