A genuine encounter with Jesus changes a person. In today’s readings we read about people who have encountered God and changed. In the first reading from Zephaniah 3, we see that most of the people have rejected God. But the LORD says, “For then I will change and purify the lips of the peoples, that they all may call upon the name of the LORD, to serve him with one accord.” This didn’t mean everyone, but only a faithful remnant.
In the Gospel reading from Matthew 21, Jesus tells a story of two men asked by their father to go work in the vineyard. The first said no, but changed his mind and went. The second said yes but did not go. Jesus then tells the chief priests and elders that “tax collectors and prostitutes are entering the Kingdom of God before you.” Why? Because they believed John the Baptist, but the chief priests and elders “did not later change your minds and believe him.”
An encounter with Christ must change us. The word repent simply means to change your mind. This is the first thing we must do – change our minds. From there, God will change our hearts. And when our hearts and minds are changed, it will lead to changing our ways. Let’s start the process today!
Father, may we change our minds to be more like Jesus, that you may change our hearts and our ways to be more like Jesus. Amen.
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