POWER FOR MISSION

            FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

 

OUR THEME FOR 2011

(Part 37)

 

POWER FOR MISSION

 

Ascension Sunday

June 5, 2011

 

Today’s readings:

Acts 1:1-11

Matthew 28:16-20

 

 

This year, after 30 years of formation, God is ready to pour out upon us the fullness of His strength, so that we can truly become the servants through whom He will show His glory (Is 49:3). Our task is to become His light to the nations, so that His salvation may reach to the ends of the earth (Is 49:6b). This includes the internal dimension of growing in holiness, thus enabling us to manifest God’s light to the world, as well as the external dimension of doing the work of rapid, massive and worldwide evangelization.

Our basic mission is evangelization, according to the great commission of Jesus. “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations” (Mt 28:19a). Jesus gave this final instruction to his apostles, and this same commission is for all who profess to follow him, all who are to be worthy to be called his disciples. This is our commission as well.

When God calls, he enables. “The Lord called me from birth …. He made of me a sharp-edged sword” (Is 49:1b,2a). In the same way, Jesus taught and gave instructions to the apostles (Acts 1:1-2), he sent them on practicum, he formed them, and finally he baptized them with the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:5b).

The baptism in the Holy Spirit is empowerment for worldwide mission. “But you will receive power when the holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8). It is what allows us to become witnesses of and to Jesus. We witness by our lives of holiness (the internal dimension), and we witness by proclaiming the gospel (the external dimension). People see Jesus in us, and people hear about Jesus from us.

Jesus said that all power in heaven and on earth has been given to him (Mt 28:18b). Now we are called to continue with his work of bringing salvation into the lives of people. This divine work, the very work of God, can only be done in the power and strength of God.

As we strive to be holy as God is holy, as we walk along the narrow path of righteousness and integrity, as we do not veer away from God’s call, as we embrace the cross of salvation, then may we truly be able to say, “My God is now my strength!”

 

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