1 Tim 6:13-16
“Now, before God, the source of all life, and before Jesus Christ, who witnessed to his noble profession of faith before Pontius Pilate, I charge you to do all that you have been told, with no faults or failures, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, who at the due time will be revealed by God, the blessed and only Ruler of all, the King of kings and the Lord of lords, who alone is immortal, whose home is in inaccessible light, whom no human being has seen or is able to see: to him be honour and everlasting power. Amen.
The words we hear today from the Apostle to the Gentiles show us how important it is to carry out a mission entrusted to us by God. Paul commands Timothy, he gives him a binding instruction, and he does so “in the presence of God and of Jesus Christ” in order to give greater force to his words, and this mission entrusted to him will remain in vigour until the Lord’s return.
It is clear that these words of the Apostle are not addressed to Timothy alone, but count for all those who have been called to the Lord’s service and who are to bear witness to Christ in the world. Just as there are different charisms in the Church, there are also differences in the meaning of the missions that the Lord entrusts to us.
Think, for example, of the parable of the talents, which were distributed in different amounts to each servant. However, each of them had to account to his master for what he did with the goods entrusted to him, whether they were few or many talents (cf. Mt 25:14-30). In the same way, each person must fulfil the particular mission entrusted to him by the Lord for the building up of the Kingdom of God in this world.
So, each one can ask himself in the presence of God: what is the mission that has been entrusted to me? These strong words of St. Paul can awaken us from any somnolence! And let no one feel too small, even if he thinks he possesses only one talent, for even this one talent must bear fruit, and we do not have the right to bury it. Every God-given talent is valuable for the Kingdom of God, and if used in the right way, it will bear much fruit.
How can we, then, recognise our special task in this world?
We Christians have a mission that has been entrusted to us on a general level: to bear witness to the Lord in word and deed, and to practise corporal and spiritual works of mercy. This would be enough, and if all Christians would fulfil that task in the power of the Holy Spirit, then surely the world would be more penetrated by God.
But apart from this general mission, there are also specific tasks, which have been “designed” particularly for our person. How, then, can we discover this specific mission?
First of all, we must look carefully at the circumstances in which God has placed us in life, and what are the tasks involved in the reality in which we live. We can, for example, take advantage of our profession, which should not only be a means to secure our livelihood. Suppose I am a teacher. Then I have been entrusted with the task of transmitting the sciences in a way that glorifies God. Thus, the profession becomes a vocation, or, in other words, a mission entrusted to me by the Lord. We could apply this to many other fields: our profession becomes a mission, if we carry it out in the light of the Lord.
But there are also difficult situations that can become a mission from the Lord for us. Take, for example, the case of a serious illness, which makes us unable to carry out our usual responsibilities. Now our mission will be how we deal with this illness. Do we try to deal with it in such a way that it bears fruit for the Kingdom of God? Do we give others the witness of enduring an illness in surrender to God, as a participation in the Cross of the Lord?
As we can see, God can use all the circumstances of life and turn them into a mission for us. He can also call us out of the world into a life of special following of Christ, and there we fulfil the mission He has set for us.
The important thing is to understand that we have the honour of being sent by God to fulfil a mission in this world. If we are aware of this, we will not get entangled in worldly affairs and will be able to raise our eyes to God at all times, to examine whether we are following in His footsteps. In this way, we remain vigilant and consciously approach the Return of the Lord.