Old and New
Did you make any New Year’s Resolutions, determined to replace a habit, or begin a new practice? The second reading today tells us about changes that affected old and new ways or reasons for doing things. The old habit of fasting, once a ceremonial law, would have a new purpose in the Christian community. Now, as a way of connecting to God, fasting reminds believers of their dependence on his mercy. The old ways were changed, and new ideas were considered. Jesus explained that it was like putting new wine into old wineskins. If you put a patch of new fabric on an old sack, it will eventually break or pull away with wear. The old wineskin is the old Covenant which Jesus did not come to repair. The new wine skin is the New Covenant, the improvement Jesus would bring to his followers.
He didn’t come to patch up our lives but to change them for the better. He told them things they’d never heard before. They were comfortable being like old wineskins and were not prepared to be changed or to grow. We sometimes find it difficult and rebel when challenged with anything new. It requires an attitude of acceptance and a willingness to adapt. A joyful resolution is to let God enter our lives through the Holy Spirit. We strive to remain flexible and open to loving God and all his children.
Jesus is asking us to resolve to do something new, to change some of our old ways. Consider saying “yes” to God and resolve to grow spiritually. Think about the return of the Lord. Does that thought change the way you live? Are you ready to put Christ first in your life?
Let us pray:
Jesus, you stand right before us with outstretched arms, welcoming, loving arms. Today, you are asking us to do something new rather than simply continue our old ways. We call out to you in prayer, petitioning for your help in our everyday lives, offering you our constant love and adoration for your saving grace. Help us to embrace changes that will move us into your warm embrace. Amen.