There comes a time in our lives when we must bid farewell to the people we close to us. Since that parting is inevitable, the best thing we can do is to leave a good impression or make a positive impact on the people we’re leaving. We see this in the ministry of Jesus (with his disciples) and St. Paul (with the elders). In Paul’s farewell speech to the elders as he leaves Ephesus to Jerusalem, there are a number of things we can learn.
He showed them humility – Paul told them that he has served the Lord with all humility and with tears and trials. It is a call to be conscious of the disease of pride, especially when we are making great strides. We need to do all things to the honour of God and not to our praise. Also, it’s a call to do everything to the best of our abilities. Anything less than that is sinful; if it must be done, it must be done well.
He taught them to be filled with the Holy Spirit – Paul said to them that he is bound in the Spirit, meaning he is a slave to the Spirit, thus he does not do what he wants nor goes where he pleases, unless the Spirit urges him to. As we prepare to celebrate Pentecost, St. Paul teaches us how to make the Holy Spirit fruitful in our lives. We need to become His slaves and allow Him to become the wheel that directs us.
He taught them to be obedient to the voice of the Spirit – even though St. Paul does not know what will befall him in Jerusalem, he still allows the Spirit to dictate the course to follow. Sometimes the Spirit wants to use us to break new grounds but because we don’t know the outcome we resist it. We need to learn to lean on the Spirit and not our understanding in all our ways.
In our gospel, Jesus in his farewell discourse prays for His disciples. Let us always pray for those who have been entrusted to us and seek their welfare as we seek to please God. We must put them first and above us. This is exactly what Paul also did so he said “but I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may accomplish my course and the ministry I received from the Lord Jesus.” May God help us to make a positive impact on the ones around us.
(Acts 20:17-27; Ps. 68; Jn. 17:1-11a)
KEEPING YOU ALL IN PRAYERS. BE SAFE AND GOD BLESS YOU.