Do you cleanse the inside of the cup? Or are you like the Scribes and Pharisees and only clean the outside? This is what Jesus asks us in today’s Gospel, Matthew 22: 23 – 26.

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You cleanse the outside of cup and dish, but inside they are full of plunder and self-indulgence.  Blind Pharisee, cleanse first the inside of the cup, so that the outside also may be clean.”

I remember when I first found my way back to the faith, I read the passage and a few others that are similar and I remember thinking how true this is. So many people put up a show on the outside but are quite different on the inside. They live their lives like good “Christians” while they really aren’t.

People make a big show of being “religious”, they go to church, they make big donations, they say all the right things, yet when it comes right down to their own lives and what they truly believe they are quite different. They cleanse the outside but not the inside. We this a lot in politicians especially, but others as well.

Throughout my life, whether in my religious life or and other art of it, I have never worried too much about what others think of me. I have never been one to try to impress others from the outside, I am what I am, as Popeye used to say. I have never been much about big houses, fancy clothes or fast cars, but rather who I am inside. True, until recently, God wasn’t necessarily part of this, at least not consciously, although I now realize He has shaped me more than I thought.

God knows what we do everyday, He knows what we think. He is the only one we need to worry about. He is the one who matters. Keep the inside of the cup clean and you won’t have to worry about impressing others, it will shine through.

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