“For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with the wisdom of human eloquence, – so that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its meaning.” – 1 Cor. 1:17
Last night after one of the Ash Wednesday masses, we had a speaker come talk about the path of salvation – the practical steps and the need that we have of Christ to be our Savior. There are so many baptized Christians who are just going through the motions and ‘following the rules’ of what it means to be a Christian, yet don’t have a relationship with Christ. They have never met Him or experienced the power of his love in their lives. It struck me to the core and reminded me – Camille, this is the reason you moved across the country to work for Saint Paul’s Outreach. In my prayer time this morning, I was reading through Corinthians, and the verse from above leapt off the page. I have to preach the gospel, simply and clearly, so that they might come into relationship with Christ! Sometimes I am held back by fear and it keeps me from proclaiming our need for Christ. I get trapped by the relativism of the culture that says, “What’s good for you is good for you, and what’s good for me is good for me. Don’t impose your religious rules on me.” But does each person still need to know that they are loved by the God of the universe? That they were created to know love and flourish in the life of God? YES!
In his talk last night, Deacon Ralph Poyo spoke of the walls that we’ve learned to build around our hearts because we’ve been hurt and are afraid of letting others get too close. We barricade ourselves in, trying to block out and stop painful words from penetrating our heart… but when have our walls ever actually kept out a hurtful word? Whoa – perspective.
He took us through a light-speed journey of salvation history, beginning in the Garden of Eden and explained how it represented the life of God. Adam & Eve existed, literally, within the life of God… but when they were sent out, there was nothing they could do of their own merit to re-enter. We are all trying to re-enter that participation in the life of God, because that’s where we’re meant to be! Except we can’t get there on our own, and that’s why we need Christ!
So, today I am going out to be bold, to proclaim Christ to the students I will be meeting with. Please pray for me!
“Behold, I am sending you out like sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and simple as doves.” – Matthew 10:16
Oh! and Happy Valentine’s Day, by the way!