Works of love are always a means of becoming closer to God. Mother Teresa is more than just the author of these words; she is most certainly a paragon of the idea as well. Throughout her time as teacher, nun, and missionary, Mother Teresa’s works of love expanded beyond an eternal focus – she saw the importance of also ministering to the temporal realm. She enrolled in basic medical training so that she could serve slum communities in India with both the Gospel and health care. She created a hospice for those suffering terminal illnesses, founded the Missionaries of Charity, and built a leper colony that allowed lepers to live beyond the definition of their disease.

Jesus’ ministry is also a paragon of the idea. Jesus healed lepers, the blind, the sick. In his response to a leper asking to be cured, he said, “I am willing. Be clean.” (Matthew 8:3) He spoke beyond medical health concerns to spiritual health concerns, ministering to the doubters and those lacking faith.  Our well-being was and is important to our Father, and through Jesus and his teaching, we have proof that faith can make us well.

Are you a paragon of Mother Teresa’s words and Jesus’ example? In reflection of HIV/AIDS Day on December 1, we’ve searched ourselves for this answer at African Leadership. Whether addressing medical health, spiritual health, or areas other than health, we have the chance to perform our own works of love and grow closer to God through them. After restoring life to another leper, Jesus stated, “This will show them you have been healed.” How do you show you have been healed?

 

*Italics quoted from “A Simple Path” by Mother Teresa.