FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
ON EVANGELIZATION AND MISSION
September 10, 2011
Today’s reading: 1 Timothy 1:15-17
We are reminded, as we constantly need to be, of our mission. Our mission stems from Jesus’ mission. And what is Jesus’ mission? “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.” (1 Tim 1:15b).
Jesus is the Savior who saves us from our sins. This is the bottom line and the foundation for our Christian faith and life. While God does so much more for us, including giving us worldly goods to enjoy and a family to warm our hearts, God desires that we be saved and live with Him eternally in heaven. What good would it be if we enjoyed so much blessings on earth, only to suffer the loss of heaven in the afterlife?
The mission of the Church, and consequently our mission, is to bring that salvation into the lives of people. The Church is missionary. CFC-FFL’s work is evangelization and mission. We exist to evangelize. We proclaim the good news of salvation in Jesus to the world, so that sinners may be saved.
We, as well as the whole Church, can do so much more good in the world, as God wants His people to already experience a bit of heaven on earth. But at times, we end up focusing on these good things but miss out on the essential.
* We may raise a wonderful family with well-disciplined children but fail to bring them to Christ.
* We may do work with the poor but fail to proclaim Christ.
* We may fight for the culture of life but fail to introduce people to the Author of life.
* We may work to save the environment but fail to recognize and worship the Creator of the universe.
* We may work for peace in the world but fail to acknowledge the Prince of Peace.
The most important task for a Christian, a follower of Christ, is to be an instrument God can use to save sinners. Once we have experienced salvation, then everything else follows.
Now the wonderful thing about all this is that God uses ordinary people like us as His co-workers. Jesus already won salvation for us on the cross, and there is nothing that we can add to that. But in the inscrutable way of God, He calls on us to be the ones to proclaim that salvation to others, so that people may hear, believe, call on Jesus and thus be saved. Thus we are able to participate in the very divine work of God.
Is that not an incredible thing? Is that not a glorious privilege? Is that not an awesome responsibility?
What needs to happen for us to take our place as evangelizers? We first acknowledge our own sinfulness. “Of these I am the foremost.” (1 Tim 1:15c). Before we can become agents of salvation, we are objects of Jesus’ saving deed.
We continue to recognize our sinfulness, even as we have already accepted Jesus and are experiencing his salvation. Such humility and lowliness enable God to use us as effective instruments, filled with His Spirit.
Then we make the decision to serve God as evangelizers. There will be much room for growth, but everything happens as we take on the glorious privilege of being God’s instruments for the salvation of sinners. Jesus came to save sinners, and now that is still the very thing that he seeks to be done.
“This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance” (1 Tim 1:15a).
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