Curtis Martin of FOCUS tells a story about pushing an SUV uphill. He says that there is nothing wrong with the SUV except that nobody turned on the ignition. How hard it would be to push an SUV up a hill without the engine running!
It is a good example that allows us to relate to the challenge of evangelizing. While our parishes have all we need to move forward in sharing the gospel, are we trying to do it manually, without the Holy Spirit? Without first becoming disciples ourselves?
What will it take to "turn on the ignition" in our parishes?
It begins with an activation of the Spirit in our personal lives. When we are transformed ourselves, so that we are bursting with joy at the Good News of salvation, then we can evangelize, because a joy-filled faith is attractive. Others might wonder, "Why are you so animated in your faith?"
But so many of us are struggling in our faith. We feel stuck. We don't know how to move. We lose confidence and trust that God is present.
Whenever I hit a bump in the road that shakes me, I turn to scripture. As the inspired Word of God, the bible is God's revelation of himself to us. What could be a better aid to help us move out of a spiritual slump than to sit quietly with the Lord and just listen.
His words of comfort can come through others, too. Sometimes they are a word of encouragement or simply a quiet prompting. Regardless, we must never give up.
It might sound too easy, but sometimes if we just sit with a crucifix in our hand (a cross with the body of Christ on it) and focus on the cross, powerful thoughts may arise.
We should be careful not to grow too content in our faith. We do not want to become (or remain) nominal Christians. If we want to become evangelizers, we must begin by stepping out. Take a class! Listen to a podcast or go to a presentation! Go on retreat!
We must do something that we have not done before and open ourselves to God through opportunities.
Have a blessed day in the Lord.