If we understand mission, that is, the mission of the Risen One to preach the Gospel to all creatures (cf. Mt 28,19), as the seeking love of our Father for His children, then we come very close to the innermost heart of God. He has entrusted participation in this search for his children and thus opened a deep desire of his heart.
In the Father’s book it says:
“If somebody went and talked to these souls, abandoned to their superstitions, or to so many others who call Me God because they know I exist but not that I am close to them; if somebody said to them that their Maker is their Father as well, and that He thinks of them and is concerned with them, that He surrounds them with intimate affection in their sorrows and dejection, this would obtain the conversion of the most stubborn ones, and these conversions would be more numerous and firm, that is, more persevering.”
It is indeed a great difference whether people only generally accept an existence of God, or whether they concretely recognize and experience that God is a Father who cares for them and surrounds them with intimate love. If a general perception of God still remains very much in a kind of fog, then through the personal proclamation of God and subsequently an encounter with him, man as a whole is addressed. He experiences his being loved and this is decisive for his further path.
In the Book of the Father, God himself asks the rhetorical question whether it is not possible to say that the missionaries after all spoke to the unbelievers of the mercy and love of God, and whether one could say even more. The Lord himself then gives the enlightening answer:
“The missionaries have spoken and still speak of God as far as they know Him, but I assure you, you do not know Me as I am, because I am coming to proclaim Myself the Father of all and the most tender of fathers, in order to transform your love, which has become distorted by fear.”
With this response, it is clear that the proclamation of the Gospel also requires a right and internalized relationship with God if it is to be fully fruitful.
This is easy to understand when we remember that it is possible to have a correct knowledge of the Gospel message and its teaching, but that its proclamation still lacks true love. One’s own person has not yet been sufficiently melted by love through the encounter with God. Our person carries still unfreedoms which prevent the Holy Spirit from developing the full beauty of his presence.
The starting point is – as our Father lets us know – still the lack of knowledge of the loving nature of God. For this reason, the communication of faith is limited, and those people whom the gospel is meant to reach encounter too little of the true image of God.
Perhaps we can say that at times the severity of God may have been too dominant in the preaching, and a false fear before God may have created forms of bondage that do not reflect the true image of God. On the other hand, it can happen that one primarily wants to focus on the mercy of God, but it is in danger of preaching it without contours and in this way also does not convey the right image of the heavenly Father.
From what has been said it becomes clear how important the Father’s message is for correcting the image of himself. The right image of a loving Father gives a great light in which we should live and remain. So says the text of the booklet:
“But now I am giving you this light. Remain in the light and bring it to everybody, and it will be a powerful means both to obtain conversions and to shut, if possible, the gates of hell.”
Our reception of God’s love and dwelling in it makes possible to win another fruitfulness in mission, because then our word of proclamation is carried by this love. In other words, the Holy Spirit, in working with us, is all the more able to carry love to the other person also through us and awaken the person, so that more and deeper conversions can take place.
Harpa Dei accompanies the daily scriptural interpretation or spiritual teaching of Br. Elija, their spiritual father. These meditations can be heard on the following website www.en.elijamission.net