No Neutrals Needed!

    At a Pentecostal revival prayer meeting, a barber was 'saved.' (The Pentecostals' belief is that during such revivals when someone claims to have been touched by Jesus they call that person is saved). The preacher told him that since he was a barber and got to meet a lot of people, he could do a great work for the Lord if he would talk to them about religion and salvation. When he asked how he could get into a conversation like that with his customers, the preacher said, "Just do it casually. Talk to them about their soul, ask if their house is in order, if they are prepared to die, and so on."

The first man to come into the barber shop wanted a shave. While having casual conversation, the barber put a warm towel over him and lathered him up good. He figured it was time to get down to the religion part in the conversation. He grabbed his razor, sharpened it, pointed at the man, and said bluntly, "Brother, are you prepared to die?" The man jumped up and ran out of the barbershop with the lather still on his face.

      Jesus after forming his disciples sends them out to exercise their ministry. They had witnessed him curing the sick and driving out demons, teaching crowds and welcoming sinners, proclaiming God's kingdom. Now he calls us to do the same. Sometimes we look for better day, better time, better occasion etc.

    There is a legend about a little fish who overheard fishermen say that a fish needed water to live. The little fish became worried and started hunting for water. He swam from creek to river to the seven seas. Finally, he met a big, old fish who saw how worried the little fish was and asked what the trouble was. The little fish explained that he was looking for water because he heard the fishermen say that a fish cannot live without water. The big fish laughed and said, "O little fish, why are you worried? Don't you know that you are in the water all the time?"

      It is time for us, who have been on the Church rolls from infancy, to fulfill the mission given by Jesus. Every person is equipped to carry out Jesus' commission at every occasion, every day. At a formal wedding, an usher usually asks, "Friend of the bride or the groom?" Then he seats the party on the appropriate side of the Church. An usher once asked a lady, "Friend of the bride or the groom?" She replied, "Both." He explained, "I am sorry, lady. They did not tell me where to seat neutrals!"

    That is the way it is with Christ. There are no neutrals. We are invited to make an affirmative decision, rather than being neutrals.

In the Service of the Lord,
  Fr Thainese Alphonse


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