DISCLAIMER: I want to be completely transparent here. This is not just "a crummy commercial!" In fact, I had to have my editor approve this particular message before, during and after writing it. Timing is everything right? For the last four years I have been writing a book entitled, Our Journey With God. No, I am not announcing its completion but I do want to share with you what is about to happen. The time has arrived for me to take the Our Journey With God message public. Read through this week's Gospel and you'll catch the drift of what I'm saying.
The Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert, and he remained in the desert for forty days, tempted by Satan. He was among wild beasts, and the angels ministered to him.
After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God: "This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel." Mark 1:12-15
These few short verses mark a pivotal point in Jesus' life as well as John the Baptist's. St. Mark treats Jesus' time in the desert rather briefly. This is especially interesting compared to the story of Jesus' three temptations by Satan in Luke and Matthew. The point is that after His baptism by John the Baptist, Jesus is immediately led into the desert by the Spirit for a time of preparation before beginning His public ministry. After that comes Jesus' proclamation: "This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the Gospel."
For me, Our Journey With God is kind of like my proclamation of the Gospel. It has been an amazing journey up to this point but when I was asked to lead a Lenten parish mission it felt like God was saying to me "It is time, Joe." For four consecutive evenings, I will share the Our Journey With God message as Maria leads worship with songs we've chosen to enhance the message. The message, in a nutshell, is that "This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the Gospel."
This message is as true today as it was 2000 years ago. And if people think it's a crummy commercial, so be it. I'm delivering the Gospel message He has given to me! Will you?!?
Click the link below if you'd like to see the actual print "commercial" we've prepared for the