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FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
 
 

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

THE NEW EVANGELIZATION
(Part 120)

CALLED TO LIVE AND SHARE CHRIST

March 31, 2015

Today’s readings:
Isaiah 49:1-6
Psalm 71:1-17


The work, mission, commission, service, destiny of a Christian is to do the work of evangelization. By being named “Christian,” we are to live Christ and to share Christ. This is according to God’s plan, even before we were born. “Before birth the Lord called me, from my mother’s womb he gave me my name.” (Is 49:1b). “Christian” is our name, and to live and share Christ is our calling and our destiny.

To enable us to live out our calling, what has God done for us?

God empowers us to witness to the gospel. “He made my mouth like a sharp-edged sword” (Is 49:2a). Our mouths are not meant to speak insults, maligning, gossip or the curse, but rather to proclaim the gospel. The words we speak about Christ, especially founded on the word of God, which is living and alive and like a two-edged sword, is meant to touch the hearts and minds of people, and to open their eyes to the truths of the gospel.

Such witnessing to Christ is to be our lifestyle, something we do naturally and in the normal day-to-day circumstances of our lives. “My mouth shall proclaim your just deeds, day after day your acts of deliverance” (Ps 71:15a). We are to share Christ with our relatives, friends, neighbors, co-workers, wherever the Lord gives us the opportunity.

What in essence is the work of evangelization?

It is about the justice of God. Justice is giving to everyone what is his due. What is due to us, by God’s own design and plan, is the salvation already won by Jesus for us on the cross. But to experience this salvation we need to call upon the name of the Lord. This can only happen as we hear the good news of salvation in him, and decide to profess him as Savior and Lord. And thus our part. “O God, I will tell of your singular justice.” (Ps 71:16b).

The New Evangelization, given that there today are so many lapsed Catholics, who in effect are baptized pagans, has a particular focus on bringing back the lost sheep to the sheepfold. We are sent forth to proclaim Christ anew, so “that Jacob may be brought back to him and Israel gathered to him” (Is 49:5b).

But it does not stop there. We need to renew and strengthen the one true Church, in order that she might do work among the nations. “It is too little, he says, for you to be my servant, to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and restore the survivors of Israel; I will make you a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.” (Is 49:6). Our task is to win the world for Christ!

We were born and are destined to live and share Christ. This should be our focus, our conviction, our passion. We must live an evangelistic lifestyle, for as long as we are on this earth. “God, you have taught me from my youth; to this day I proclaim your wondrous deeds.” (Ps 71:17).

If such is our conviction and vision, then God can really use us according to His will. Then we can truly serve Him according to His desire. Then we can become the instruments that will show forth His dominion and glory. “He said to me, You are my servant, in you, Israel, I show my glory.” (Is 49:3).

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