Faith, boldness, discipleship, loyalty, truthfulness, and love. These are the key words that District Apostle Kububa Soko from Zambia associates with our 2023 motto. In his Spotlight article he explains what exactly this means for our everyday life.
At the beginning of each year, the Chief Apostle announces to the New Apostolic Church members the theme of that particular year. He also clearly explains its meaning.
I reflected on the meaning of this year’s theme, “Serving and reigning with Christ”, and the following came to my mind.
Strong Faith in Christ. First and foremost, for us to serve and reign with Christ we must have strong faith in Him in all circumstances. We should take Him as our example and learn from Him (Matthew 11: 29). To have strong faith also means living our lives in accordance with the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Boldness. For us to serve and reign with Christ we need to be bold! We must follow and serve Christ with boldness. When speaking about our faith in Jesus Christ, let us do it with boldness. When we confess Jesus Christ to others, let us do it with boldness. This is important because the Lord will also confess us before our Father in heaven (Matthew 10: 32).
Following and loyalty. To serve and reign with Christ demands that we must diligently follow Jesus Christ and be loyal to Him alone. In Luke 9: 62, it says: “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” The lesson here is that we must focus our attention on following and serving Christ alone.
Truthfulness. For us to serve and reign with Christ, we need to be truthful. Jesus Christ as our example was full of truth during His time on earth. In fact, He did not just teach the truth He was and is the truth Himself (John 14: 6). The element of being truthful must therefore be evident in our way of life in that we remain faithful to the teaching of Jesus Christ.
Love. Those who want to serve and reign with Christ must learn to love others. Those who are filled with the love of Christ will sympathise and empathise with those who find themselves on the periphery of society. Love also means that we treat each other with respect. Jesus Christ gave us a new commandment which is to love one another as He loves us (John 13: 34).
Putting the word into practice. Serving and reigning with Christ demands that we put the word into practice. Each time we attend a divine service we have an encounter with the Lord. The Holy Spirit speaks to us. The question is, do we put what we hear into practice? James advises us to be doers of the word and not only hearers (James 1: 22).