October 1, 2013

Our Mission: Passionate Witness

Matthew 28:18-20
“Rekindle in us the power of your love.”  Some will recognize those words as part of the Prayer to the Holy Spirit. The power of Christ’s life fueled the Disciples and enabled them to fulfill their mandate to spread the Gospel throughout the world. We, who are Jesus’ disciples, are also tasked with this same mission. In fact, we repeat this mission every Sunday when our pastor asks our congregation, “And what is our mission?” And we reply, “To make disciples of Jesus Christ to transform the world.”  When we say these words each Sunday, I think of the great cloud of witnesses, those who have come before us, encouraging us to go forward.  And I imagine that God is pleased with our willingness to witness, but I am convinced that God is more pleased when we actually do it—when we are freed for joyful obedience and act on our faith. Having good intentions isn't enough.

For years I've had good intentions about exercising regularly. I’d start and do well for a time, then quit when the going got tough or when I just was too tired. But having breast cancer this spring gave me an opportunity to take advantage of the wonderful fitness ministries at the YMCA, one of which is the ABC program. As part of this program, I get to meet with a personal trainer who helps me and keeps me accountable so that I can make my fitness goals. I still am tired from my long commute to and from work. Most days it is still hard to drag myself to the Y, but knowing that my trainer has set aside time for me and has an investment in me, gives me added motivation. She rekindles my resolve by the power of her investment in my progress.

So how much more will God rekindle us through the power of his Spirit? God is invested in us and has tasks for us to accomplish. We can be sure that we don’t have to go it alone. In addition to his Holy Spirit, God gives us each other.  And that’s a good thing, because transforming the world takes all of us. God is our trainer. He’s there to motivate us and keep us accountable. But God also provides us with the fuel of faith to help sustain us when things get tough.

Dear God, Rekindle in us the power of your love. Send forth your Spirit and we shall be created and you shall renew and face of the Earth. Oh God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit, we may be truly wise and ever enjoy your consolations. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.


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