The Tradition of the Elders and The Things That Defile
Reflection on the Gospel of the Tuesday
In today’s gospel by stating ‘what enters into the mouth does not make a person unclean, but what comes out of his mouth may defile him’, Jesus was not only referring to food, but all the traditions and the personal observances we follow. Nothing is wrong with this in fact it may be good for our spiritual growth. However, observing our faith’s tradition and personal observances becomes useless when we don’t live our faith. For example, the teaching of Jesus about forgiveness, what good is it if we go for Holy Mass every Sunday, but we are not willing to forgive a person who has hurt us?
Jesus thus shows that our purity does not depend on external things, but upon the attitude of our heart. So at any given time check what’s there deep down in your heart with regards to every person or situation you face.
A person’s words show what kind of person he/she is (or isn’t), not the food he eats or other personal observances we follow. What do your words show about your heart? Do you gossip about or judge others when they are spoken about? Do your words show a heart that is focused on worldly things? Are your words angry and loud? Or do your words show your love for and thankfulness to God? Are your words filled with compassion and grace? These should be our check points which will makes us clean or unclean before the presence of our God.