Bringing the Text to Life

The Mother Teresa Effect John 11:1-45

Jesus is the "all-time, undisputed, undefeated Champion of Love." How are his followers doing as "Champions of Love"? Can others look at us and say, as they said about Jesus, "see how he loved him"? Can Jesus say that ["see how she loves"] about you? About your church?

Alas, none of us has Jesus' power to defeat death. But we can imitate Jesus' active, engaged style of ministry in our own attempts to embody Christ's love for the world. By reaching out to others in need - physically, emotionally, spiritually - we can help defeat the specters of despair and dread that debilitate so many of our loved and society's "unloved" ones. Like Jesus we can find ourselves by losing ourselves in behalf of others.

Probably the most enduring slogan of George Bush's 1988 presidential campaign was his call for "a thousand points of light." Instead of relying on government programs or social service professionals to illumine the depressing corners of our society, Bush urged all Americans to get involved as volunteers, to personally participate in the needs of others. Volunteering has long been a hallowed part of American social/political programs. The spirit of volunteerism in 19th century America can be credited with providing enough support and agitation to end...

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