THE SERVANT GENERAL
OUR THEME FOR 2015
BEING PREPARED FOR THE WORK - 2
In everything, our focus needs to be on Jesus. This is key
to our relationship with God, with others, and with our work
with the poor. “Have among yourselves the same attitude
that is also yours in Christ Jesus” (Phil 2:5). We often
let our own emotions, preferences and desires rule us. And
that is where all the trouble comes. But we must take on the
very heart and mind of Jesus. What is that?
“though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality
with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself,
taking the form of a slave, .... he humbled himself, becoming
obedient to death, even death on a cross.” (Phil 2:6-8).
Here we find a number of necessary postures.
We do not stand on power or position or pomp. If we do
God’s will, God will certainly use us to do great
work, for it is His work after all. But we do not let
this get to our head and cause destructive pride. We in
fact should know that God does His work in spite of us,
as we are often the obstacles.
must then take on the heart and mind of a servant, of
a slave. We stand not on privilege or personal rights.
We have nothing to boast of on our own. We are useless
vessels, and can only be used by God as we empty ourselves
of what is worldly.
such, we must simply obey. We do not profess to know more
than God, to advance our personal plans and priorities
rather than His. We must simply and humbly accept what
God tells us.
we obey, we must know that God calls us to the cross.
We are called to die to self. But given the ongoing and
escalating persecution of Christians in the world today,
including in the supposedly civilized western world, we
could actually be called upon to give up our very lives.
We are martyrs.
Now with power to witness, we are prepared for the work. What
is the goal? It is salvation. “Blessed is the one who
will dine in the kingdom of God.” (Lk 14:15b). God desires
this salvation for all. “A man gave a great dinner to
which he invited many.” (Lk 14:16). Thus he sends his
disciples (that’s us) to bring the invitees in. “When
the time for the dinner came, he dispatched his servant to
say to those invited, ‘Come, everything is now ready.’”
(Lk 14:17). Unfortunately, many do not want to come to the
feast. “But one by one, they began to excuse themselves.”
(Lk 14:18a). They are not necessarily doing bad things, but
might be absorbed even by the good things in life, such as
livelihood and family (see Lk 14:18b-20).
is also the case with some of us who are called to participate
in the work, preventing us from participating more fully in
our work of evangelization. We must be warned. If we do not
do God’s work, in obedience, with priority, with total
self-giving, then we endanger our own salvation. “For,
I tell you, none of those men who were invited will taste
my dinner.” (Lk 14:24). The invited are not just those
who are to be evangelized, but also those who are invited
to become workers in the vineyard.
The world is too preoccupied with itself. This is especially
for those who are rich, or even just those who are blessed
with livelihood and family. Who are more receptive to the
gospel message? Is is the poor, who have nothing. Now God
loves the poor. And His Church is to have a preferential option
for the poor. Thus this is our work too. “Go out quickly
into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in here
the poor and the crippled, the blind and the lame.”
(Lk 14:21c). By this work, “the poor will eat their
fill” (Ps 22:27a).
again, salvation is for all, not just for the poor. In the
Kingdom of God, “there is room” for all (Lk 14:22).
And so we are to cast a wider net. We are to try to reach
everyone, especially lapsed Catholics. “The master then
ordered the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedgerows
and make people come in that my home may be filled.’”
(Lk 14:23). This can happen through LCSC.
it not be a glorious day if and when “that at the name
of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on
earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus
Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Phil
2:10-11). This is the goal of our work of massive worldwide
evangelization, that “all the ends of the earth will
remember and turn to the Lord; all the families of nations
will bow low before him.” (Ps 22:28).