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To Be Builders of Christ’s Kingdom: Weekly Message for 11-19-2019
Dear Digital Pilgrim in Christ,
Before following Christ’s invitation to a total dedication of my life in service to his Church, my professional experience was in architecture. Just ask anyone of my consecrated companions and they will tell you how much I still enjoy everything and anything to do with design, building, creating, and figuring out how things work together.
As Christ’s followers, what fascinates me even more–what is truly amazing and marvelous–is that we have been made sharers in the mission of helping to build up Christ’s Kingdom. He invites us to join him! He asks us and looks to us to make his kingdom known and present through the acceptance and collaboration with his grace in our daily lives. Christ gives an eternal meaning, an everlasting resonance to our lives here on earth. So whether we are building a family, a healthy work culture, a business, a community, a ministry, an apostolate or a house…our efforts can have an eternal reverberance.
As the feast of Christ the King draws near, it is a perfect opportunity to renew our commitment to being builders of his Kingdom. A helpful exercise might be to take some time to sincerely reflect on how intentional and committed we are to living, promoting, and witnessing to our life with Jesus.
So here are 5 simple suggestions for ways we can announce his coming and participate in building up his kingdom:
- Spend daily time with the Lord in prayer. In Luke’s account of the choosing of the twelve apostles “He [Christ] called his disciples to himself.” (Luke 6:13). To build his Kingdom we must first go to him, protecting our time each day to pray and deepen in our relationship with him. To know what to do, giving meaning and purpose to our daily activity, we need to be listening to what the Lord desires and wants for us. How am I giving priority to this most important moment with the Lord each day? How is he inviting me to be with him and draw closer to him each day, especially during this time of Advent?
- Ask for an increase of faith and a repentant heart. “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” (Mt 3:2) Faith is a gift that we need to ask to receive, strengthen, and persevere in. Not just for ourselves but our friends, family, and all people of faith throughout the world. Starting with our awareness of needing Christ’s saving grace and mercy, we need to renew our faith and ask for his forgiveness. Consider making the sacrament of confession a more regular activity this Advent or identify where in your own life you might need to forgive or be forgiven.
- Express gratitude – not just feel it. “The culmination of the journey of faith is to live a life of continual thanksgiving.” (Pope Francis ) With profound gratitude, we are invited to reflect upon all of the Lord’s blessings to help us ready our hearts for the preparations of Advent. To be thanking God first and foremost and then expressing gratitude for the many ways he loves, cares, and provides for us through the people around us. Who needs most (and more often!) to hear me say “thank you” or show my gratitude toward them this Advent?
- Be patient and joyful with those around me. With numerous family gatherings, trips to the store, and Christmas parties over the next several weeks it is worth asking “How does God want me to be present? What does God want me to do? How does he want me to witness to my faith?” There will be many grace-filled opportunities to accept the people and circumstances that God’s providence permits in our lives. Love others with our patience, gentleness, and understanding. (1 Cor 13:4-8) Do not judge others but rather offer mercy and compassion just as the Lord has extended to you!
- Renew our desire for where and how Christ is asking us to witness to him. “God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission… I shall do good; I shall do His work.” (St. John Henry Newman) How is he present and at work in your life? Where am I called to witness to the importance, impact, and influence of Christ’s saving grace within my family, workplace, and amongst friends? Look for those God moments and share your story. Don’t be afraid to share your experience of pain, frustration, joy or sorrow to prompt a conversation about the action of God and how you are growing and drawing closer to him. Ask God to lead you to reach out and put the loving hand of God into the hand of those we love who may be lost, misguided, or searching for meaning in their lives.
For us here at RCSpirituality we rely entirely on the prayerful and generous support of so many who make our ministry possible. It is to you we are most grateful and encouraged. Our way of saying thanks is to continue our commitment to serving your need for spiritually enriching content that helps you to grow, persevere, and share in your faith and friendship with the Lord.
Wishing you a very blessed and happy Thanksgiving! Please keep counting on our prayers for you and your family. May Christ, who came to bring lasting peace and everlasting joy to the world, find a home in every heart this Advent!
P.S. Please keep sending us your feedback, including thoughts and ideas about the kind of topics and resources you would like us to provide in the coming years. We want what we do here at rcspirituality.org to be a real help for your pursuit of holiness, happiness, and fruitfulness as builders of Christ’s Kingdom.
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