As a teenager, whenever I would backtalk my mother, she would say, “You need an attitude adjustment!” In today’s Gospel Reading, Jesus is saying something similar.
Our Lord taught that all the rituals in the world will not make us godly if our minds and hearts are in the wrong place. One of the things that He uses as an example is what our readings translate as “blasphemy.” To His audience, this was a broad term for “abusive or scurrilous language”. It is an easy sin to commit. We do it by bad-mouthing a co-worker, being unduly harsh to our children, gossiping, lying or angrily yelling at another driver who commits some traffic violation (my personal favorite). Jesus also said, “people will render an account for every careless word they speak.”
But, there is good news. Our Lord loves us. He will forgive our past words and while He tells us to change our hearts, He has also given us a helper: the Holy Spirit. He teaches us that, if we ask in prayer, God will give us the Spirit (Luke 11:13). The Spirit can make that attitude adjustment that leads to true conversion and will make us a loving disciple of Christ.
God wants to talk with you! Be silent, contemplate and pray that the Holy Spirit uses your speech as salt and light to the World.