And he said to them, "Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation. The one who believes and is baptized will be saved; but the one who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: by using my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes in their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover." So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and proclaimed the good news everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by the signs that accompanied it. (Mark 16: 15-20)
Introductory Prayer: Lord, thank you for taking the time to be with me. There are things in life, Lord, that attract me, but you attract me more. I hope in you because you are always faithful to your promises. Maybe I don’t fully understand what it means to love, and maybe I don’t love the way I should, but I do love you.
Petition: Lord, help me to focus on what I can do to tell others of your love.
1. Christ: When Christ blesses, it happens. When he takes yeast and kneads it with three measures of flour, it leavens the dough all through. When he blesses the bread, it multiplies. When he blesses the Eucharist, he is there for us. Christ blesses his apostles. These are not just events of the past, for God’s word is a living word. He also wants to bless me and my work. How can I draw down Christ’s blessing upon me, my family, the people I love, and the work I do? All I have to do is ask him to bless me and believe that he can and wants to. He will take care of the rest.
2. Apostles: Imagine the apostles talking after the Ascension. Andrew might say to Peter, “Peter, Christ told us to preach to all nations.” “You are right, Andrew, we need to go to the next town,” Peter would agree. “No,” would urge Andrew, “we have to go to Athens and Rome.” Peter might object, “Athens and Rome! But we don’t know anyone there.” In an attempt to persuade him Andrew would add, “Peter, Jesus wanted us to begin here in Jerusalem because this is the largest Jewish city. However, he has shown that he has also called the Gentiles to the Church. We must go to their capitals, their cities of greatest influence so that they too might hear the message Jesus entrusted to us.” Despite their fears, they obeyed Christ and proclaimed the good news in new places.
3. Us: Now it is our turn. As it always has been, being an apostle today is difficult. As we get older, it gets harder. Nevertheless, it is our turn. We live at a crossroads of history. I know Christ is blessing me. He is sending me. I feel fear, but I know he is asking me to imitate the fidelity of the first apostles. He is only waiting for me to begin preaching so that he can bless all that I undertake in his name.
Conversation with Christ: Lord, thank you for coming. Thank you for giving the apostles the strength to resist and persevere. Now it is my turn. Grant me the graces I need to proclaim the good news.
Resolution: I live life but once. So today I will analyze how I use my time and resolve to eliminate one of the bad habits that leads me to waste time.