Pentecost 23
Collect: Rejoice this day in what God is creating.
Rejoice in what we see all around us.
Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again!
Thank you, Lord, for the hope we have in your kingdom,
both present and to come, Amen
From the desk of the minister: Stand firm, and you will win life!
This is one of the most important teachings and encouragements of Jesus to
his disciples. He wants them to be different from the others in words and
deeds. For Jesus, his followers will always carry their cross. You cannot be a
follower without carrying your cross. This is a journey that is different from
any other journey. If we recall the story of Jesus and his responses to some
questions that was given to him, we will see the importance of being a disciple
of Christ, for example: Someone asks who is my neighbour? Jesus tells this
person that your neighbour is everyone, not just your own Jewish family.

Another question, How many times should I forgive? 70 times 7, or in
other words, forgiveness is unlimited.
Love you enemy, for this we will be
different from unbelievers.
If someone slaps your cheek, give them the other one. If you go with a
burden for one mile, make it two. When you give, give it whole heartedly
for Jesus loves a cheerful giver.
The story for today’s gospel is about the
destroying of the temple and all the persecutions that will face the followers of
Jesus. Jesus did not tell his followers to run away to a safe place. He told them
to “stand firm, and you will win life.” The Greek word for stand firm means
not to be easily moved from your faith or where you stand.
Here I stand and I am not going to be moved by anyone or anything.
This is the challenge that we are encouraged with today. To become a follower
of Christ, we will risk everything in order to stand firm with our hope despite
the trials and persecutions of life. We will hang on to our hope and persist
with our faith in Jesus Christ no matter what, because we know that one day,
we will win in our journey of faith. Yes, the temple in Jerusalem will be
destroyed but not our faith in Jesus Christ. Good advice for life –

“Stand firm, and you will win life.”

Grace & peace Rev Maile