Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
(Romans 12:11-12, NIV)
Take a Moment to Ponder
As the two-year period set aside in our Diocese for Intentional Discipleship progresses it is important that the promise that this special period held for us all is kept at the forefront of our hearts and minds. In the ordinary time of the church year away from the contemplative seasons of Advent or Lent or the celebrations of Christmas, Easter or Pentecost we need to be just as excited about living and sharing our faith, as we were when the initiative was launched or when we met to study together in Lent. We must remain committed to our baptismal commitment to share the good news and assurances of our faith.
Our lives must be lives of joy and hope, we must bear our personal afflictions whether they be financial, emotional or physical patiently and show that although our lives are not devoid of suffering or adversity we know a God that upholds us and whose power to sustain and transform is immeasurable. This God is accessible to all through prayer and we can have the conversations that we need to have with him through regular, ongoing prayer. I chose the word conversation because just as we expect God to listen to what we say we have to be still and receive his words unto our hearts for contemplation and action. It is so easy to be swept away by the pressures of life, and then run out of time to pray or, worse yet, forget to pray. We need to enter service as disciples undergirded by the strength of God and filled with the grace of the Holy Spirit.
Think of three things that have been a source of hope in your life recently. As you contemplate each one offer a prayer of gratitude to God for revealing through the Holy Spirit the joy which awaits you for your faith. Next, consider three things, which have been sources of affliction in your life. Pray to God for the endurance to bear these afflictions and like Job receive the reward He has promised for remaining faithful. What do you sense the Holy Spirit telling you through these reflections? Are you prepared to listen? Now most importantly, are you prepared to share intentionally how as a Christian and as a Disciple you keep your zeal and passion alive through affliction and the storms of life? How you remain joyous and positive?
A Moment in Prayer
Lord, give us zeal and fervour to serve you and share the good news of your salvation.. May we kindle the same fire in others that we have burning in our hearts. Make us aware of the glorious hope that we have and, through this hope, give us joy unsurpassable. We acknowledge the favour bestowed by you calling us personally into Your service. Help us by Your Spirit to live up to this great privilege by serving with the attitudes expressed in these verses. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
Contributed by: Sister Thera Edwards