Summary: We cannot leave unbelievers in ignorance, but in sharing the Gospel it is more important to hear what they need than to prescribe a treatment for a disease they don't even know they have.
Monday of 18th Week in Course
August 2, 2010
You Will Be My Witnesses
Jesus’s reluctance at the wedding feast of Cana, a reluctance summarized in His words to Mary, “woman, what is this to me and to thee, my hour has not yet come,” came from a deep understanding of human nature. There may be no such thing as a free lunch, but people will still take maximum advantage of anything that looks like one. Even when Jesus tried to get away for some recollected prayer, the people hunted him down. And, as always, he had compassion on them and fed them.
We are no better than Jesus, after all. Archbishop Gomez teaches “you will find yourself called to proclaim Christ to people in different states of life and different levels of religious formation.” Some are Christians; many are not, or are even nonbelievers entirely. “In trying to evangelize, we confront powerful cultural pressures towards religious relativism; the dominant idea today is that ‘any one religion is as good as any other’ and that people should keep their religious beliefs to themselves.” It is not going to help people who are in error to ignore them and keep them in error.
How do we do this, talk about Jesus with those “who have not yet heard or received the Gospel? We should do so with sincerity and all honesty, knowing that our personal witness and acts of love will tell people as much as our words.” In the steps of Blessed Mother Teresa, we cannot give our treasure of faith to anyone, but we can fall in love with that faith and pray that others receive it. When any opportunity to share our faith arises, we should seize it, lovingly, and do more listening than talking. After all, it’s more important to understand someone’s needs than it is to assume we know what they need and then sell them a cure when they don’t even understand the disease.