Friday 22nd Week of the Year
When asked a question about his disciples fasting,
Jesus said that there would be a time that they will fast,
and that was after his Ascension into heaven.
To help us understand how important fasting is
in our walk with Jesus,
he tells a parable about wineskins.
What do wineskins have to do with fasting?
In our Lord’s time, people didn’t have glass,
so they used wineskins to carry wine.
Old wineskins were brittle and could crack under pressure.
They used new wineskins because they were elastic
and could expand under the pressure the gas gave off
when the wine fermented.
Well, like wineskins, we have to ferment too.
Our minds and hearts have to expand
to bear Jesus to the world.
No one who comes to know Christ Jesus personally can stay the same.
None of us are perfect.
Just think how entrenched we become in our thinking and attitudes.
When we do and refuse to change,
our hearts become hardened like an old wineskin.
When we fast, we deny what is ours so we can grow into what is Christ’s.
We’re hungry for all that he offers us that is new and different.
If we don’t fast our hardened hearts will crack
because Jesus is more than we can humanly hold.
Our old ways of thinking and behaving,
praying and relating to God and people
are like old wineskins that have no give.
My way or the highway we say.
Please, God, we are going to change and grow
and like all the saints, become another Christ.
I love this saying of St. Padre Pio “If the people of the whole world could see the beauty of only one soul when it is in the grace of God, all sinners and unbelievers of this world would be converted.”
Let us never be afraid to change anything human in our life for Jesus,
whatever the sacrifice or even momentary embarrassment it may cause us.
Let us ask him to help us throw away our hardened hearts
and create in us hearts worthy of him
who is the most precious vintage of all.
We want nothing that our Lord Jesus gives us so generously to spill out be lost.