This week’s readings call us to turn to the Lord, modeling our actions and words on Christ Jesus. The first reading from the prophet Ezekiel gives hope that those who think better of their situation and renounce it are given life. The psalm reveals the heartfelt prayer of someone turning away from their sin and embracing the gift of new life.
St. Paul shows what it is to give up sin and take on the mind of Christ. The Church at Philippi was, on the whole, a source of joy for Paul, but here, he appeals for greater unity, which could be reached only by imitating the humility of Christ, who became obedient even unto death. Out of love for us, Christ even gives up his divinity freely and without reservation.
Amidst growing tension following the overturning of the money changers’ tables in the Temple, the religious leaders confront Jesus, demanding to know the source of his authority. Jesus tells the parable of the two sons and poses a question, causing the chief priests to reflect on the difference between putting the self or others first. By answering correctly, thereby aligning themselves to the boy who said he would do his Father’s will but then didn’t, they convict themselves.
This week, let us keep close to Christ, who obeyed the Father perfectly in word and deed. And let us remember that it is never too late for us to turn to God and follow his will.
Joy and peace.