Joyful discipleship

Fr. Joel de los Reyes

By Father Joel de los Reyes
Divine Mercy Moments

Jesus entrusted the Gospel to his apostles and to us to share its message with everyone everywhere by proclaiming and living what we proclaim. The message and mission are spiritually rich, but Jesus demands that we be poor and simple, detached from worldly attachments and attractions. The message that we’re announcing is about God and his kingdom, his desire that we all be saved, his desire that we respond to his merciful love with trust, and his desire that we love one another as he has loved us.

He sent his disciples to unknown places some of which are hostile and unwelcoming. Perhaps they were apprehensive especially when Jesus told them not to carry provisions on their journey, no money, no walking staff, no bag, and no sandals, just what they wore. And yet they all went to their missionary destinations with joy and came back joyful. In instructing them to be light and simple on their journey, in effect wanted them to trust in divine providence.

Surely, the disciples of Jesus encountered hardships and challenges, but they faced them with courage and trust in the Lord. The Lord did not simply send them, he also empowered them, and the spirit of the Lord was constantly with them. It is the spirit of God that made them joyful and daring in their mission. It is the spirit of God that makes us rejoice.

We too have our mission in life. Whatever our profession, work, or status may be, let’s blossom and bear fruit, that means doing our duties and responsibilities well, show good example with good works, kind words, and nice behavior, inspire others to find hope when everything around them seems dark and desolate. Let’s share our blessings with others and imagine if everyone does this, no one will have too much and too little, but has enough to live decently and humanely.

St. Paul uniquely gives us a dimension of Christian joy when he boasts of the cross of Jesus Christ (Gal 6:14-18). He teaches us in effect to be joyful even in the midst of suffering or trial for this is an opportunity to share in the cross of our Master who bore the weight of the cross for us. Each of us carries a cross in life, our pain, sorrow, stress, health issues, personal or family concerns, and burdens. We need the divine assistance to bear them; for left alone to ourselves, we can’t do anything. Prayer connects us to God to implore his grace and strength.

On the flip side, someone said that we should stop being afraid of what could go wrong and start being excited of what could go right. You carry so much love in your heart, give some to yourself. Love people and use things. Problem begins when you love things and use people.

The right people who belong to your life will find you and stay with you. You don’t know how long you will stay in your comfort zone, time goes fast, and things of this world will soon fade and go. Make the best of life, that’s only one and nothing more besides. Amen on that folks!

Pray the Divine Mercy every 3 p.m. Daily recite the Chaplet of Mercy and the holy rosary for peace in our families and the whole world.

Come to our healing Mass every Wednesday at 6 p.m. Mass at San Vicente Church, Barrigada with anointing of the blessed oil of San Roque and veneration of his sacred relic.