Celebrates Twenty Years of equipping and supporting faith communities!

A message for the week starting on Sunday 9 October 2022

Lectionary Week: 18th Sunday After Pentecost
Prescribed Texts: Jeremiah 29:1, 4-7, Psalm 66:1-12, 2 Timothy 2:8-15, Luke 17:11-19

Focus Text:  2 Timothy 2:8-15

Living a “Christ-like Life” in a Challenging World

We know that Christ endured all things and ultimately the cross for the sake of humankind. As a follower of Christ, Paul also suffered to the point of imprisonment. We know that the gospel story of our lives is the one that ends in “. . . and we all live happily ever after,” but getting to that point poses challenges for most of us. Just look at the global financial crisis and how it has caused the closure of so many NGO’s. We witness how the bearer of “good news” is not exempted from the struggles.

Yet in all of this, we hold fast to our hope and faith as we see Jesus was raised from the dead (v8). We continue to do good even when encountering unappreciative attitudes. When it costs us nothing, the question that needs to be asked is, was it still worth doing? Paul describes how he goes through challenging times for the sake of others (v10). He is not saying for the gospel, as this would sound more appropriate if he were to use that phrase. Matthew’s gospel tells us that if we have not done it for the least, we have also not done it for Christ. (Matthew 25:40)

The question we need to ask is, what does my Christ-like life look like? I would like to look at just a few areas of living a Christ-like life:

  • Do we still volunteer to do anything – cleaning our area, making a pot of food and share it, go to a children’s home, and make a child’s life special?
  • In a world where money is becoming a scarce commodity, do we donate financially to organisations that address the needs of the multitudes?
  • We can speak about helping a struggling family or just secure education for a child by paying school fees. What about contributing to a salary of a teacher, where government will not, to reduce the scholar teacher ratio?
  • Adopting a child and give such a child a chance in life.
  • Are we continuously evaluating our attitudes towards people that are different from us?

It is in what we do for others that we truly live the Christ-like life. (v15). My Christian worship is found in how I go about relating to others on a day-to-day basis.

To Think About: We are living in a world overwhelmed by human need. Is our “Christ-like life” making a difference? With organisations and churches already doing the work, it will be profoundly life-changing to get involved with our time, money, and skills.

Written by: Rev. Clive Swartz, trained Churches Channels of Hope (CCoH) facilitator, former CABSA programme co-ordinator