Thursday of the Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time
(Colossians 3:12-17; Luke 6:27-38)
Paper ghosts, witches, and skeletons have already invaded department stores. Halloween decorations can be purchased now for an event still seven weeks away! Children and certainly some adults as well are wondering what costume they will put on. Today’s first reading suggests some articles for Christians to wear. They are to be put on not just on one day a year but every day.
The passage recommends that the Colossians “put on…heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” It means that they are to practice the virtues of forbearance and love. In his Letter to the Romans St. Paul says it even more poetically. “Put on the Lord Jesus Christ…,” he says. He wants his readers to act like Jesus day in and day out. If they do not know how, they might check today’s gospel for instructions.
It has been said that it is easier to act yourself into a new way of thinking than to think yourself into a new way of acting. In other words, if we wish to lose weight, it is better to eat less and exercise more than to imagine ourselves as thin. Alternatively, if we wish to become like Christ, we best stop judging others and pray for those who mistreat us.