Today’s Gospel proclamation reveals the Lord’s heart for sinners and social outcasts. Matthew was a tax collector, working for the Roman authorities who did not pay him much and it was the custom of tax collectors to overcharge people and take the profits for themselves. Matthew would have been seen as socially and morally corrupt and would have made his living through defrauding others of money. But Jesus does not ask him to change. He just says, “follow me”. He does not say, “You can only follow me if you give up your sinful lifestyle.” There are no conditions to his call. Jesus accepts Matthew as he is and loves him as he is.
In the same way Jesus calls us to come to him as we are. We may be sinful, broken or addicted but Jesus calls us to come to him as we are. We may be great sinners but he loves us anyway. He is calling us to come to him and be changed like Matthew. We need to spend more time growing in intimacy with him. In his presence we will be changed and transformed to the person he wants us to be.
Prayer: Abba Father, thank you for your unconditional love that liberates us from our bondages. Amen.