“Listen to me, all of you, and understand: there is nothing outside a person that by going in can defile, but the things that come out are what defile.” (Mark 7:14-15)
The Queen of Sheba travelled all the way from Africa to see Solomon who was trending on world social media (back in the days) as “the wisest fellow amongst all humans.” This was quite a journey for her. She came with her entourage to discover, to learn and to explore. In the end, she went back wiser and better equipped for leadership. The land of Sheba would never remain the same.
Our Gospel passage today invites to a special voyage of discovery – the land deep down within! This is the place we do not like to visit, yet it is never far from us. It is our own heart; the cooking pot that churns out our ideas, inspirations, motivations, and even feelings.
Jesus tells us: “Hear me, all of you, and understand: there is nothing outside a man which by going into him can defile him, but the things which come out of a man are what defile him.” (Mark 7:14-15). No wonder people often say: “What will kill a man is inside of him.”
The truth is that most of us do not even care to know what is inside of us. We barely examine our hearts. This is why we easily notice the specks in other people’s eyes but are blind to the logs in our eyes. (Cf. Matthew 7:3-5). We are good at judging, condemning, and calling people names when they fail to meet up with our expectations even though we fail to meet up with our own expectations of ourselves.
Do I know what is inside me? How often do I examine my conscience? The church in her wisdom decided to inculcate the examination of conscience in the Night Prayer of the Divine Office to give us the opportunity to look inwards daily before we go to bed. Try this today; be faithful to it and your life would be totally transformed.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, make me pure and holy inside. Amen.
(Wednesday 9th February 2022. Read 1 Kings 10:1-10, Ps. 37:5-6,30-31,39-40, Mark 7:14-23)