“If anyone be in Christ, they are a new creation, the old has passed away, behold the new has come.”
-2 Cor. 17
I remember when I first heard this passage. I was nineteen years old, a sophomore in college. Looking back to that time, I thought I was such an adult, yet today I realize how innocent I was. Yet even in my innocence, I was also aware of my own sinfulness. When I heard the words, “the old has passed away, behold the new has come,” it reminded me how much my soul hungers for transformation. I long to be more whole and holy. Am I able to let the past be? Am I open to new possibilities? Can I allow all my relationships to be a new creation? Can I believe all of us are about the “goodwill” of each other; that we can bring out the love that is within each of us?
Examination of Conscience
Each of us has a force within us that frees us to bring darkness or light into the lives of others, the power of God working within us.
Take your hands, look at them carefully. How often have your hands brought darkness into the life of another? Have your hands refused to serve your neighbor, the poor, the sick, the aged, minority groups, and even your family? (Pause briefly)
We are called to be the hands of Jesus. Lord, we ask that our hands may bring light to others. Lord, have mercy.
Close your eyes. How often have you brought the darkness you are experiencing now in the life of another? Do you look at others with envy, hatred, and jealousy? Do you see only the vices and faults of others and fail to see what is good? Do you look at others as less important than you? (Pause briefly)
We are asked to see others with the eyes of Jesus. Lord, we ask that our eyes may bring light to others. Lord, have mercy.
Concentrate now on your words. How often have your words brought darkness to another? Do you speak angrily to others, damage another’s reputation or honor? Have you injured others by lies, dishonesty, the violation of a secret? (Pause briefly)
We are asked to speak to others as Jesus did. Lord, we ask that our words may bring light to others. Lord, have mercy.
Concentrate and listen to your heartbeat. Have your feelings brought darkness to others? Do you refuse to forgive and make peace? Do you harbor hatred and the desire for revenge? Do you give a feeling of coldness and indifference to others? Does love of God and neighbor find no room in your heart? (Pause briefly)
We are asked to have the heart of Jesus. Lord, we ask that our feelings may bring light to others. Lord, have mercy.