Lenten Devotional – Day 9 – Transformation
No one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins. (Mark 2:22)
A week of Lent has passed, and my old ways are starting to pinch the new resolve that I so sincerely made on Ash Wednesday. Perhaps I am being made aware of the need for new wineskins—a different way of looking and acting—not merely placing the new on the top where there is no mixture of the new and the old (like vinegar and oil).
permanent, lasting change. I cannot expect to merely patch up the holes in my journey to become whole—I must spring clean the old habits—to make room and time for the new spirit to come in. My challenge is to open up myself to Christian love and to pass on the kindness of others that have shown me the love of Christ.
As Lent proceeds and I am attempting to put new practices into my life to draw me closer to God . . . I must remember that the new practices (like new wine) must be put into new wineskins (a new, more open body and mind) in order for there to be a
In Genesis, Joseph asks to be remembered when it is well with the wine steward. However, as soon as the wine steward’s fortune was restored, he forgot about Joseph. It is easy to get caught up in the routine so that there is not time nor energy to allow new ways of serving to be tested, new friendships formed.
Mark reminds us how Matthew followed the call of Jesus without hesitation. I forget my Baptismal call and often fail to allow the love of Christ which is within me to be visible to others. I hesitate to find new opportunities to serve and new self- improvement challenges.
In Corinthians, I am reminded that I am God’s temple and that God’s spirit dwells within me. The Temple of God that is within me needs to be awakened with new wine. I need new eyes which see the opportunities for different service. I need a willing heart to sit and listen and to be aware of what I am reading; that serving God is not always doing but also a renewing of myself. This Lent, may I remember that the Baptismal service marks us as Christ’s own forever . . . I am Christ’s and a worthy vessel for the new wine. May I continue allowing the old to be transformed so that there are new wineskins to receive the new.