I am convinced that God has a sense of humor!
Today the Gospel from St. Mark recounts the episode when Jesus told His followers: "If your hand is your difficulty, cut it off. Better for you to enter life maimed than to keep both hands and enter Gehenna with its unquenchable fire." In order to emphasize the seriousness of his teaching he said the same thing about the foot and the eye. (Mark 9:41-50)
After reading this passage I closed my book and meditated on those words of the Lord. In all seriousness I prayed, “Jesus, what part of me needs to go; what is it that is causing me to sin?” Instantaneously the thought came into my mind: “Your head!”
I almost laughed out loud! But He was right. It is my “head” that causes me the most trouble – rather it is my mind, my thoughts! It is in my thoughts that I am sometimes uncharitable, judgmental, impatient, discontented, self-righteous! Of course I cannot cut off my head! (Where would I put my veil?) And Jesus does not mean for us to literally cut off the physical parts of our body. But I can cut off my sinful ways of thinking. And I can continue to beg Jesus to convert my heart so that I can love as He loves. After all, it is my lack of love, my divided heart which causes my thoughts to be so unruly.
St. Paul writes in the letter to the Ephesians that we must be renewed in Christ and “acquire a fresh, spiritual way of thinking.” (Eph. 4:17-24) To fail to love in my thoughts is no laughing matter. Not if I want to make it to Heaven.