In our society and world, there is an effort to satisfy our spiritual hungers and longings within our society. The drive to satisfy spiritual needs is so great so much so that people who do not develop healthy spirituality in their lives tend to develop empty beliefs and commitments. So many have sought unsuccessfully to satisfy this spiritual hunger and longing in ways that all the more diminish their spiritual, mental, emotional and physical well-being/health. So many have worshiped a variety of gods (with a small “G”) like success, money, power, beauty, health, love and relationships, family, friends and associations, and even religion, only to suffer more as they discover the profound inadequacies of these idols.
Against this background, we hear Jesus saying: “I have come that you may have life and have it in abundance.” Jesus has come to show all of us the way to live and experience happiness in abundance. His way of life is the way of love spelled out in his self-giving and service.
Love, as a verb, is something we do. But it is also something we feel and enjoy, often involving intense, good feelings such as passion and sensuality, compassion and caring. Though all these feelings are very important to us, love is so much more. It involves doing those things that will enable those we love to develop their treasure of possibilities and thus move towards “life in all its fullness.” Jesus’ self-sacrifice on the cross was the means by which we may live the ultimate way of love and fullness of life. Without love, there can be no wholeness and happiness. It is the heart of happiness. It is the power, the means, the meaning and goal of happiness.
- Is there a relationship between evangelization and the challenge to love? How are these related?
- How do you see it connected to your wholeness and happiness?
- How are you experiencing happiness when you serve others?
Points of conclusion after the discussion:
- At the very foundation of the New Evangelization is the way of love as Jesus has shown. It is about our self-giving and service so that others may find life.
- The Holy Spirit is the agent and protagonist of evangelization as shown in the Acts of the Apostles. It is the Spirit of love between the Father to the Son and the Son to the Father.