Disciples for always, in all ways
Someone once said that there are three most difficult things to do in this world: count your hair in your head, wash your eyes with soap, and breathe with your tongue out.
(OK. You may put your tongue back in now!) In today’s Gospel, Jesus told His disciples the difficulties they will encounter in their mission. They will encounter deprivations, persecutions, dangers, even rejection, but they were to continue their mission (together) and with their Master.
We do not need disciples who are individualists, and disciples who do not have a personal relationship with the Master. In other words, we do not need disciples who serve like a one-man-army, worse, like mercenaries for a fee.
“Peace to this house.” This was the message the disciples were to proclaim to every place they would go to. The message remains the same to this very day. We are to proclaim the peace of the Kingdom of God. May we continue to be instruments of peace and justice wherever we go.
By the way, if you tried breathing with your tongue out, that means that you are a hands on, not just a theoretical, person. Discipleship is not so much about big talks and big visions and programs as being out there, walking the talk, with blood, sweat and tears.
Evangelization through traditional media and social media is effective and fast, but still, we value and acknowledge the actual presence of disciples out there in the mission trails, in the remotest barrios and mountains, and many other unknown places and settings. One with you!
Those whom God calls, He empowers. The Master goes with us, and His power is upon us. Let us rely not so much and not only on our human resources. Let us not forget the tremendous power of prayer, and the presence of the Holy Spirit in our life and ministry as His disciples.
It’s always almost a religious experience to visit our retired and sickly confreres at our Villa Cristo Rey retirement home in Christ the King Seminary. I call it the “hall of fame” for those who spent many years in the vineyard, serving the Lord in all ways. It is such an inspiration to see them, humble and hidden, still, serving their Master, even in their sickness and sufferings, in their sunset years, disciples for always.
For those who lived a meaningful life, the sunset years are not a dreadful, lonely, regretful time. Those who spent their lives serving God and helping others are at peace, knowing that they have not lived in vain, have not caused so much pain, and have done their best to serve especially the last, the least and the lost.
What are you doing the rest of your life? Just relax, enjoy and just wait for your time to come? No, meet the Lord halfway! Your mission is not yet accomplished. Make the rest of your life the best of your life. Be a disciple still, for always, and in all ways. How? Ask the Lord. He will tell you.
In our sunset years, may we be singing Simeon’s canticle: “Lord, now let Your servant go in peace; Your word has been fulfilled; my own eyes have seen the salvation which You have prepared in the sight of every people; a light to reveal You to the nations and the glory of Your people Israel.” (Lk. 2, 29-32).
Think about this: “Worry is a conversation you have with yourself about the things you cannot change; prayer is a conversation you have with God about the things He can change. Trust more, worry less. God is in control. God has a plan. God has perfect timing. Wait ka lang.”
A moment with the Lord:
Lord, help us to be Your disciples for always, and in all ways. Amen.
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