Today we celebrate the feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, one of Catholicism’s greatest Saints, reformers, and spiritual fathers. Famously, one day while Francis was praying in his local church, the Lord spoke to him from the crucifix. Jesus commanded him to rebuild His Church. (Bio of Saint Francis here).
I hear the same call now.
The call from Jesus to Francis is the same call pressed into the lives of you and me. We are commissioned to be saints, to be lights, to be reformers at this exact time in the life of the Church. As today’s Gospel reminds us, "The harvest is abundant, but the laborers are few" (Luke 10:2).
Working for the Kingdom is a labor. Being one of the few can feel intense at times. Loving God and His people consistently is no easy task. Holiness requires something of us. Striving for sainthood is not flashy or numbing. In fact, it’s the thing that will give us the greatest return-on-investment and make us feel most alive.
But I have to be willing to work. I must be willing to completely rely on God (“carry no money bag with you”), to be a bearer of peace in my relationships (“peace to this household”), and to witness the joy of knowing Christ to others both in word and deed (“the Kingdom of God is at hand”) (Luke 10:4, 5, 9).
Am I willing to answer Jesus’ call? Am I willing to go out? Am I ready for this particular time, this particular battle? Am I ready to get uncomfortable for the sake of the Kingdom? Am I ready to have hard conversations with myself, with God, with others? Am I willing to forsake distraction, to forsake sin, to do this work? Am I ready to risk reputation and relationship? Am I willing to demolish vice in my heart and renovate with virtue? Am I open to letting Christ rebuild my own soul so that I can help rebuild His Church?
If the call to sainthood, to a sainthood like that of Francis, has felt like a long-term goal, or perhaps an unattainable one, let this be our wake up call. Christ rallies us in today’s Gospel, like He rallied Francis from the crucifix. The time for holiness is now. The time for rebuilding is now. The Kingdom of God is at hand.
Let’s renew our hope in our Vindicator (Job 19:25). And let’s get to work.
Turn in reliance on God to bring your best gifts forward to help rebuild His Church. Ask Him to illuminate your heart and direct you. We are praying together, sisters.
Olivia Spears lives in Kentucky where the sweet tea and bourbon flow like milk and honey. She is the Blog Manager for Blessed is She and works from home as an editor and social media manager. She likes to binge novels and Netflix while raising her children and laughing with her husband. You can find out more about her here.