THE LUMINOUS MYSTERIES
3. The Proclamation Of The Kingdom And The Call To
||After John had been
arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God:
"This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at
hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel."
Conversion. The Greek word
for converting means: to rethink-to question one's own and common way of
living; to allow God to enter into the criteria of one's life; to not
merely judge according to the current opinions. Thereby, to convert
means: not to live as all the others live, not do what all do, not feel
justified in dubious, ambiguous, evil actions just because others do the
same; begin to see one's life through the eyes of God; thereby looking
for the good, even if uncomfortable; not aiming at the judgment of the
majority, of men, but on the justice of God-in other words: to look for
a new style of life, a new life.
All of this does not imply moralism; reducing Christianity to morality
loses sight of the essence of Christ's message: the gift of a new
friendship, the gift of communion with Jesus and thereby with God.
Whoever converts to Christ does not mean to create his own moral
autarchy for himself, does not intend to build his own goodness through
his own strengths.
"Conversion" (metanoia) means exactly the opposite: to come out of
self-sufficiency to discover and accept our indigence-the indigence of
others and of the Other, his forgiveness, his friendship. Unconverted
life is self-justification (I am not worse than the others); conversion
is humility in entrusting oneself to the love of the Other, a love that
becomes the measure and the criteria of my own life. - Pope Benedict
XVI (Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger )