Jesus said to his disciples:
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’
will enter the kingdom of heaven,
but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.
Many will say to me on that day,
‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name?
Did we not drive out demons in your name?
Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’
Then I will declare to them solemnly,
‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’
The words that struck me when I listened to the Gospel at Mass (above is an excerpt) today were, “I never knew you.” Why would these be the words said to those who don’t follow the Father’s will, “I never knew you.” How could Jesus, who knows all, say that He never knew us? To me, this is an echo of God the Father in the Garden of Eden, calling, “Where are you?” to Adam and Eve after they had sinned, feared, and then hidden themselves. How could God not know where they are?
What Jesus is saying is if we don’t do His will, i.e., act on His word and allow Him to work in our lives, moment by moment, to transform us, the person that presents him/herself to Our Lord “on that day” will not be one that our Lord knows. Jesus can only know the beautiful person that His father created you or I to be. He does not know the person who is hiding, the person with the hangups, the one with the walls built around him/herself, who keeps our Lord at a distance. He cannot know that person, because that person doesn’t let Him get close, and I would even say that person actually doesn’t exist. That person is the false self, and much work is needed to conquer the false person, to remove the mask, to become the beautiful person that God created.
St. Catherine of Siena is quoted as saying, “Be who God meant you to be, and you will set the world on fire.”