HERE WAS A TIME when I waited for my children to go to sleep so I could take from their closets the clothes they could no longer wear and toys they had forgotten about. I did it without their knowledge because getting rid of their things upset them a lot. Even though they did not use them any longer, they clung to them. Later, I decided to try another system, since I wanted them to learn a practical religion; I wanted them to be generous, able to give what was theirs to help their neighbors. Now that they are seven and nine years old, I am pleased to see that they are not selfish. In fact, I have to curb their giving so they do not give away everything they have to the children in the indigenous reserves of Costa Rica.
How happy I am to see a generous spirit in my children. When I compare how they were before with how they are now, I realize that their Christianity has begun to take shape, and I like the shape it has. What is the shape that your Christianity has taken through the years? Would you say that you are a person who lives to give and who loves service, or just the opposite? What have you been storing for yourself: material things or spiritual values? Do you have so many “clothes and toys» that you do not want to get rid of any of them? Are you clinging to something or someone and cannot think of life without it? You have to think about the type of wineskin you are and the type of wine there is within you.
When we look at Jesus’s words in Mark 2:18—22, we see that the religion He expects of us is a «new wine,» a new gospel, the truth of Christ, which should leave an impression on our hearts by renewing our way of thinking. However, that new (internal) way of thinking should be kept in a “new wineskin» (external)—a way of living Christianity that is not reduced to mere formalism, to empty rituals that make us look like we are Christians when, in reality, we are not willing to relinquish what is ours
Faith in Jesus is manifested by a life of love toward others and active service. If I live for myself, to achieve my goals and cling to what I have, I am not new wine in a new wineskin
«And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine bursts the wineskins, the wine is spilled, and the wineskins are ruined. But new wine must be put into new wineskins» (Mark 2:22).