A message for the week starting on Sunday 16 October 2022
Lectionary Week: 19th Sunday After Pentecost
Prescribed Texts: Jeremiah 31:27-34, Psalm 119:97-104, 2 Timothy 3:14 – 4:5, Luke 18:1-8
Focus Text: Luke 18:1-8
Persistence in Prayer
October is an important month for me, a month that my faith and prayers bore fruit. After years of hoping and almost giving up, somehow gliding through life with as little faith as the mustard seed – my precious son was born. Strong and healthy to an HIV-positive mother. I was able to contribute to the HIV Free Generation.
The parable of the persistent widow makes me reflect on the period before he was born. I had constantly asked God to make my life with illness a meaningful life; to give me a reason to wake up every morning and to face the challenges that lay ahead. I believe that to raise a child is one of the greatest responsibilities and I thank God that He also entrusted this task to me. When my body feels weak, my will power becomes stronger, for I do not live only for myself. I also remember the text in Isaiah 40:31: “But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint.”
In many societies a widow is poor and powerless, plus she is also discriminated against. This is no different to many people living with HIV, the bulk being women. However, the Lord sets a different example, by defending the cause of orphans and widows. Many people affected by HIV give up, because there is no support and someone to guide them with life-giving information and advice. HIV positive people are only as strong as their support system, like in Exodus 17:12 when Moses grew weary and needed Aaron and Hur to support him.
As Christians we need to continue having faith in God, for it is by faith that we believe in healing. A friend once told me that I should pray so that HIV is completely eradicated in my body, but I told her I was already healed. This came as a surprise to her. Healing is given in different forms; physical, psychological, economical and many more. We only have to open our eyes to see it and our hearts to receive it.
To think about: Have we lost our faith and given up on people living with and affected by HIV? How can we make a change in this broken world?
Written by: Ms. Ann Mary Gathigia, Kenya, trained Churches Channels of Hope (CCoH) facilitator