The best form of evangelization

Sacred Heart Church

You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.

You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket; it is set on a lampstand, where it gives light to all in the house.

Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.”

~ Matthew 5:13–16

***

In breaking apart today’s Gospel, Father shared that evangelization is not effective if all we do is present a picture perfect version of ourselves to others, which is akin to what we post on social media. After all, a holier-than-thou attitude cannot possibly be attractive or relatable…

Instead of perfection, what the world needs is more people sharing authentic versions of their walk with God. An authenticity that encompasses consolations as well as desolationsMoments where we struggle, stumble and fall; but humbly reflect and learn from our mistakes by the grace of God. To never allow the Devil a foothold in our lives and believe his lies that we are no longer good enough for God, but instead, continue to get up and walk in pursuit of the Way, the Truth and the Light. This, so that others may be attracted to our way of life in Christ through our seemingly feeble and futile attempts at sanctity.

However, our society and culture advocate self-promotion, and it makes it difficult to be authentic and vulnerable for fear of judgment. There is a Chinese concept of ‘losing face’, where you discredit your family’s honor when you break social norms. Yet living in fear and creating brick walls around your heart prevents you from enjoying the fullness of Life that God promises.

I for one, have difficulty coming to terms with my past sinfulness because of my immense shame. This stems from pride, which is not believing in God’s mercy and being unable to humbly accept that I could be capable of such a misdeed.

In doing so, I allow the Devil to goad me into turning away from God’s mercy. It is thus comforting that this same priest once shared that people are often intrigued about the ongoings in the confessional, and wonder if he is scandalized by the sins which he is privy to. He lamented that being in the confessional is in actual fact, boring because all of us commit an approximation of the same sins. There is no sin that he has not heard of before.

So if we have similar struggles, why do we not help each fill that God-shaped hole in our hearts rather than tear each other apart? Why allow envy, pride, and avarice to come between us? Why let the devil who hates peace and sows discord, win?

Baring one’s heart and soul may be difficult and I struggle to reveal my innermost self to others, even my loved ones. Yet it is only by the grace of God that we can be courageous enough to follow His divine prompting. We only need mustard seed faith and humility to allow ourselves to be His instruments.

I am struggling with writing about my past to help others but I severely lack courage. Which I am trying to rectify through rosaries, masses and basically, begging Mother Mary for the grace to do so. Only if it is God’s will. 🙂

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