the "look" of selfless love
"Then Barnabas went off to Tarsus to look for Saul." —Acts 11:25
A big temptation of being a disciple of Christ is to do it all ourselves, to be the leader of the pack. Yet St. Barnabas, who was in the position to be the main attraction in the church at Antioch, "was a good man" (Acts 11:24). "Filled with the Holy Spirit and faith" (Acts 11:24), Barnabas realized that he needed help for the job of teaching the fledgling Christians at Antioch.
So he went to Tarsus to look for Saul. "Looking for Saul" in a large city without modern communications was arduous and time-consuming. It could have taken days, even weeks, for Barnabas to track down Saul. Barnabas, however, knew that Saul possessed powerful gifts of the Spirit that were needed for the mission in Antioch. "Once [Barnabas] had found [Saul], he brought him back to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and instructed great numbers. It was at Antioch that the disciples were called Christians for the first time" (Acts 11:26). Out of Antioch, Barnabas and Saul were sent forth by that new church on the first Christian missionary journey (Acts 13:1-3).
Barnabas wanted life to the full (Jn 10:10) for the Christians at Antioch, and did whatever was necessary to bring that about. What about you? If someone was able to help you in your ministry or outreach, would you ask them to help you? Would you search them out at your own personal cost to beg them to help?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, may I decrease in any way so that You may increase in every situation (Jn 3:30).
Promise: "My sheep hear My voice...I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish." Jn 10:27-28
Praise: By prayer vigils, St. Fidelis fortified himself to preach the Word.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 12, 2017
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