Come, Lord Jesus Maranatha! – Part 4
Vigilance, as well as the attentive gathering of oil into our lamps like the prudent virgins of the Gospel (cf. Mt 25:1-13), were the themes of the previous reflections. Both ways are suitable to grow the love that is needed so that we do not get tired in the length of our life and waiting for the Lord.
There are many ways to express love for Jesus and for people, and love is inventive, as we heard yesterday. Love also wants to know what is on the other person’s heart. If we ask ourselves this for Jesus, there is a clear answer. He wants the Father to be glorified!
“I have glorified you on earth by finishing the work that you gave me to do. Now, Father, glorify me with that glory I had with you before ever the world existed. I have revealed your name to those whom you took from the world to give me. They were yours and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. Now at last they have recognised that all you have given me comes from you for I have given them the teaching you gave to me, and they have indeed accepted it and know for certain that I came from you, and have believed that it was you who sent me.” (Jn 17:4-8)
How the Saviour’s heart burns for the Father who sent him and for the people. If this love were also blazing in us, we would have no greater desire than Jesus Himself has.
We can give concrete expression to the fulfilment of this desire: It is the proclamation of the Gospel throughout the world. (cf. Mt 24:14, Mk 13:10).
Nothing glorifies the Father more than when man responds to his love, accepts his words and now lives with him, when he gives the Father the opportunity to gift him with his love.
As we heard on 13 December at the beginning of this week, the proclamation of the Gospel throughout the world is a sign that precedes the Second Coming.
Has the Gospel already been proclaimed throughout the world? Can we tell the Lord that this condition has been fulfilled after all and that he may come!
We may notice that we can say yes and no to this question in a certain way. The Gospel has penetrated very far, perhaps it has even been in every country and among almost all peoples. But has it taken root?
When we think of the many Asian countries, or of countries influenced by Islam that do not really know the Gospel, or of those generations that have come under communist rule or are still under communist governments, and of those countries where the full proclamation of the Gospel is becoming increasingly rare, then we must confess: Things look not very good!
The proclamation is often only horizontal, i.e. primarily related to helping people in their earthly needs instead on primarily about eternal salvation and a meaningful existence on earth.
The possibilities of proclaiming the Gospel everywhere have been greatly increased by the modern media. If these are taken into service for the Gospel, then they have their highest purpose. Of course, it cannot be overlooked that the technical possibilities often fall under the sway of dark powers and it is more and more noticeable that those who make these possibilities available are in danger of abusing their power. But we should use these channels as long as possible, without neglecting the opportunities of direct proclamation.
Allow me to be very specific, for it is the desire of Jesus’ heart and how could one deny the Lord a desire?
Thank God, there are many people who listen to my talks every day and even more who are touched by the sacred music that Harpa Dei sings. We are very happy about this and marvel at the ways the Holy Spirit reaches people’s hearts. Especially the last song “Come Lord Jesus, Maranatha” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srCwBJ0-ZY0) is very well received. It is probably the call that should go like a fire through the whole church and then through the world. With it we show Jesus that we are waiting for him, that he still finds love on earth and that we have not forgotten him and that he may come very soon.
In the meantime, there is still much to do! Therefore, a request to all of you. I would so much like to address our efforts for evangelisation in a way that will also be fruitful for people who do not yet know the Lord and are searching! May I ask for your prayers! These Covid times are apocalyptic times! It is urgent to proclaim the Gospel and to call people to a real conversion. The very awareness of the Lord`s return should awaken everything in us to share the saving Gospel – in whatever way.
Are you with us?