SAINTS, SERVANTS, SOLDIERS

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

OUR THEME FOR 2017

(Part 27)

SAINTS, SERVANTS, SOLDIERS

May 12, 2017

Today’s readings:

Acts 13:26-33

Psalm 2:6-11

John 14:1-6

Unity in Christ comes as we all strive for holiness, to authentic servanthood, and to engaging in spiritual warfare (work of evangelization). Our positive focus is on Christ our Lord, our negative focus is on the devil, the one enemy. We love what is good (that is of God) and we hate what is evil.

To be holy is to be a saint. It happens as we “have faith in God” (Jn 14:1b), and to live out that faith in the concrete. As we are called to be holy as God is holy, we strive to imitate Christ. We look to Jesus who is “the way and the truth and the life” (Jn 14:6a). As we look to Jesus, we prepare for his second coming in glory. As we look to Jesus, we look to heaven and living in eternal bliss with our Father. We need to live Christ, knowing that “no one comes to the Father except through me.” (Jn 14:6b). We can only make it to heaven if we strive to be holy.

This is difficult, but our Lord is committed to help us. He in fact awaits us. For the holy ones, our place in heaven is reserved for us. “In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be.” (Jn 14:2-3). We know where we are destined to go. Jesus wants us with him. But to get there, we need to strive to be holy.

To be an authentic servant, we look to God and to our brethren. We love God and we love our neighbor. We serve God and we serve everyone else. We need to “serve the Lord with fear” (Ps 2:11a), that is, in awe and in total obedience. We look to the Spirit to guide us in the way we are to serve. Now the Spirit uses others, our brethren and those placed over us in service, as instruments of His will as well. We may have the best of intentions, but we might not do things according to God’s intent. So we also need to “accept correction” (Ps 2:11c). We may need to re-focus, to re-calibrate. The Spirit guides us directly, but also through our brethren, especially our elders. We who are servant leaders consider ourselves the least among all.

To be a soldier of Christ, specifically a holy warrior, is to engage the enemy, the evil one, who opposes everything that is of God, and who seeks to destroy His body the Church. A basic element is the work of evangelization. We proclaim the gospel of salvation in Jesus. “We ourselves are proclaiming this good news to you” (Acts 13:32a). We are to do rapid, massive and worldwide evangelization. We share Christ. We are “his witnesses before the people.” (Acts 13:31c).

The Jesus whom we imitate, whom we serve, whom we proclaim, this Jesus was put to death, “but God raised him from the dead” (Acts 13:30). He has ascended to heaven, but will come back again. And then he will take us with him to heaven. That is, the holy ones. “Where I am going you know the way.” (Jn 14:4). Jesus is the way. We need to meet Christ, to live Christ and to share Christ. We need to be saints, servants and soldiers. Onward, holy warriors!

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