December 24, 2012

Disciples Called to Witness: Culture of Witness

Part Four of Disciples Called to Witness begins with Christ's command to love one another. (Jn 13:34-35). We evangelize through love.

The bishops cite Evangelii Nuntiandi: "It is therefore primarily by her conduct and by her life that the Church will evangelize the world..." They teach us that "(t)he faithful become agents of evangelization through living witness and commitment to the Gospel. The everyday moments of one’s life lived with Christian charity, faith, and hope provide witness to family members, friends, neighbors, colleagues, and others..."

This is not merely a convenience or a comfort for people who "can't do more". "This witness is essential for reaching others in today’s modern world." It is through the choices we make in our daily lives that people will see - or not see - a Christian witness. No amount of Sunday church-going will make up for six days and 23 hours lived like Jesus isn't Lord. Individual acts of generosity, even if extravagant or dramatic, are not a counter to an otherwise uncharitable personality.

Jesus is called, by John, "the faithful witness" (Rev 1:5) We are faithful witnesses when we follow His example in our daily lives.

Are you relying on specific acts to mark you a Christian? Find one aspect of your daily life - your commute, your lunchtime conversations, your evenings at home, your treatment of a particular friend or relative - that doesn't reflect Christ. Ask God to show you a way to make that part of your life more conformed to His will. Ask Him how best to show Christian love.

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