Friday, September 02, 2011

No One Who Has Been Drinking Old Wine Desires New

September 2, 2011

Friday of the Twenty-second Week in Ordinary Time

By Melanie Rigney

Christ Jesus is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. … (A)ll things were created through him and for him. (Colossians 1:15, 16)

Come with joy into the presence of the Lord. (Psalms 100:2)

(Jesus told the disciples this parable): "No one tears a piece from a new cloak to patch an old one. Otherwise, he will tear the new and the piece from it will not match the old cloak. Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins, and it will be spilled, and the skins will be ruined. Rather, new wine must be poured into fresh wineskins. And no one who has been drinking old wine desires new, for he says, ‘The old is good.’” (Luke 5:36-39)


Lord, this new wineskin You made for me seems so fragile at times. Teach me to love the new ways You show me more than I long for the old ones.


Have you ever given up something you know is bad for you? Smoking, perhaps, or an overindulgence in sugar. Or maybe you’ve turned over a new leaf and are listening more/talking less or working to stop using negative words. The first day or two goes well, and maybe the first week or month or even year. You thank God and congratulate yourself for the change.

But then something stressful or challenging happens, and it doesn’t seem all the prayer and community support and affirmations in the world can prevent you from returning to that past behavior. Because, after all, as Jesus says, mocking our whining, “The old is good.”

But was it as good as we remember? Sure, smoking can be calming… but it’s also an expensive, smelly habit that leaves a bad taste in your mouth. Sure, it may be satisfying in the moment to launch a well-placed verbal missile at someone we firmly believe deserves it… but the sadness on his or her face can haunt us forever. It’s when we get back to our inner room that we realize that in fact, the old is not good, no matter how much we desire it.

We don’t always resist the temptation to go back to that old wine. The amazing thing about God is that if we come to him with a contrite heart, He’s always willing to stitch up yet another new wineskin.


The 133rd Arlington Women’s Cursillo team’s Talk Day is Saturday, September 3, at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Arlington. Please offer palanca for the team members to put aside any old wine that might be a barrier in serving the candidates on the upcoming Weekend.