Scripture: Luke 11:37-52
Key verse: (39) Then the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness.”
Reflection: Tonight children will don costumes and then head out to ring doorbells and gather candy. It’s Halloween! Tomorrow, November 1, is All Hallows’ Day, more commonly known as All Saints’ Day. In Christian tradition, All Saints’ Day is when we remember the dead and give thanks to God for their example of faithfulness and the spiritual gifts they gave us. Tonight is All Hallows’ Eve, a celebration that evolved from preparations for All Saints’ Day.
Costumes give us a fun opportunity to be someone else, a superhero or a famous historical figure or an alter-ego personality. Unfortunately, we sometimes live our daily lives wearing a costume, pretending to be something we aren’t. We are afraid to admit who we really are. We present ourselves in the best light possible and hide our weaknesses and our shortcomings. We are posers, wannabes, trying to fit in.
Jesus saw beyond the outer costume and understood the inner brokenness and sin. At a dinner party, he challenged his host and the other guests, telling them that they were focused on external appearances instead of interior character. Jesus calls us to follow him in a life of integrity, so that the person we present to the world is congruous with the person we really are. The journey to healthy wholeness in Christ begins when we examine ourselves and admit the incongruities. In grace, Jesus invites us to be made whole inside and out.
Prayer: Dear Lord, you know me. I can’t hide my real self from you. You love me as I am. Give me courage to follow your call in Jesus Christ to belong to you fully. Heal me, clean me and make me whole. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Author: Millie Snyder
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].