Saturday Reflection – 10 August 2019
By your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned. St.Matthew 12:37
“May our light shine forth with brightness
From thy light reflected shine
Then the world will bear us witness
That we, Lord are truly thine.”
(Christian hearts in love united verse 4b, N.L v Zinzendorf)
I was always told that Bishop Neil would say that “Lip and life must say the same thing” In the text, Jesus addresses the Pharisees an in turns warns against hypocrisy. Jesus, as he speaks in St. Matthew 12, says “Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree bad, and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit.” We cannot serve two masters, be half-way or have “one foot in and one foot out” We cannot mask the fruit that is the produced when the tree bears, for our mango tree will always bear mangoes. So even if we mask the tree of our lives with hypocrisy and pretense, the fruit that it bears will always show the true result. Therefore since we affirm our faith in Christ, then we should live Christ-like lives.
Jesus warns against pretense in Matthew 23:27-28 (MSG) where he says “You’re hopeless, you religion scholars and Pharisees! Frauds! You’re like manicured grave plots, grass clipped and the flowers bright, but six feet down it’s all rotting bones and worm-eaten flesh. People look at you and think you’re saints, but beneath the skin you’re total frauds.” What God desires is a true and genuine relationship with in, born out of constant conversation, devotion and meditation with him and fueled by the Holy Spirit. When we spend time to nurture and grow our relationship with God, then the fruit of our effort will show this. Jesus is telling us that our actions, our thoughts and words are fruits from our habits and lifestyle, from the things we put into practice. That is why he says, “…out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” A true and genuine Christian life, engages the Holy Spirit to indwell us and in turn be taught all truth. There, my brothers and sisters, we won’t make pitfalls in what we do or say, because we are led by the Holy Spirit.
Since, we are then led by the Holy Spirit, we then must be careful of our behaviour. We must always exemplify Christ and shine his light through us at all times. To do this, we must ensure then that our words, our thoughts and actions are worthy of the name that we bear. We cannot transform the world with the gospel of Christ, if we conform to the world. We are therefore called to come out from among them and be separate so that we lead others out of darkness into his marvelous light. So then, in all our words and actions, we employ love and show the light of Christ. We tear down the walls of pretense and work on a true and genuine relationship with Christ. If we say Christ, then we must live Christ for the best message that we can preach is by the life that we live.
Until next week, may our lip and our life exemplify Christ so that we can truly be his disciples. It is our fruit that will show the result of our effort. May the fruit that we bear prove us faithful.
I leave you with a prayer that we said at the end of our Youth Meetings. Let it be our prayer as we live as Christ’s disciples
“God be in my head and in my understanding,
God be in mine eyes and in my looking
God be in my mouth and in my speaking
God be in my heart and in my thinking
God be at mine end and at my departing, Amen.”
Dominic J. Blair