You Have Been Commissioned

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Feast of the Ascension 2017

the_earth_seen_from_apollo_17

I remember watching part of a college graduation address where the speaker said, “With this degree you are commissioned to go into the world and make a difference.” The imagery conjured up in my mind by the use of the word “commissioned” was pretty powerful. I thought about the commissioning of military officers and the responsibility they took on for the lives of their subordinates but also the lives of those they protected. To me the word meant something very serious and solemn. It meant huge responsibility and expectation.

In the Bible, Jesus gives what we call the Great Commission:

Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. (Matt 28:19-20a)

The word commission makes this more than a suggestion or a hope. There is an expectation, a responsibility, and a mandate. Of course, did you wake up this morning thinking about how you would fulfill the Great Commission today?

Sharing the Faith is not just something we should do; it is something we must do. The key is that you don’t need to speak all the time to share. It will be through your life of stewardship that others will be able to see Jesus. By giving of yourself, by always responding to the call, and by surrendering all to God, you will lead others to become disciples, to seek out the sacraments, and to observe His teachings. Yes, responding in full to the Great Commission, great things can happen.

This entry was posted in Catholic, Commitment, Discipleship, Everyday Stewardship, Faith, Stewardship and tagged , by Tracy Earl Welliver. Bookmark the permalink.

About Tracy Earl Welliver

Tracy Earl Welliver is the Director of Parish Community and Engagement for LPi and an active member of Saint Pius X Catholic Church in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he previously served as Pastoral Associate for 22 years. Saint Pius X received the Archbishop Murphy Award in 2009 from the ICSC. Tracy is a writer, speaker, and teacher in the areas of stewardship, engagement, catechesis, and strengths theory, and has worked with Catholic communities throughout the US, Australia, and New Zealand. You can read Tracy’s Everyday Stewardship column in LPi’s CONNECT!, a bimonthly lectionary-based liturgy preparation publication. His writing can also be read on his Nutshell Blog, The Main Thing Blog, and in contributions to Catholic TechTalk. He also serves on the faculty for the ICSC Stewardship Institutes. Tracy has theology degrees from DeSales University and Duke Divinity School. He has been married 23 years and he and his wife, Mariann, have 3 children.

One thought on “You Have Been Commissioned

  1. As a Landscape Architect who has found a vocation in the stewardship of the Earth, and as an ambassador for the need to engage nature in our lives, I appreciate you using the photo of the Earth in your article about being commissioned. I found myself reading your words and how they also can speak about our “expectation, a responsibility, and a mandate” for stewardship of people and all creation. From “In the Beginning” God welcomed us into His garden, and in all of creation is where we were intended to commune with Him. Pope JPII makes a point to say that without a ecology we do not have an economy. Fr. Thomas Berry “commissions” humankind into a mutually-enhancing relationship with the Earth and calls it the Great Work. I offer that we enjoin in creation, a human ecology that brings the revelation of God into all lives, like the Great Commission. Jesus dies to resurrect, Jesus leaves the Earth for the Holy Spirit to be with us in our hearts and in all of creation. “Go into the world and make a difference.”

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