Truly, O people in Zion, inhabitants of Jerusalem, you shall weep no more. He will surely be gracious to you at the sound of your cry; when he hears it, he will answer you. Though the Lord may give you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your Teacher will not hide himself any more, but your eyes shall see your Teacher. And when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left, your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”
There are some people the world who show the rest of us which way to go; they offer us direction and lead by example, even into the most uncertain or dangerous ground.
These are people who are living their faith out-loud; even when it is not always the safest thing to do these people are “walking the talk” as a friend of mine used to say. Of course we can name many people who walked the talk including: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Gandhi, Raoul Wallenberg, Susan B. Anthony, Harriet Tubman, Eleanor Roosevelt, and of course Nelson Mandela, whom we just lost (but not really) yesterday.
However, there are many other people, who walk in faith every day, and make sacrifices in order to do what is right in the world, and these people also show us the way to live our faith, and to share the love of God with others, through showing compassion to those in need: not just the poor, but the poor in spirit, those who struggle with life’s challenges, and those who need to uplifted by hope and love.
Most of these people never sought to be noticed for their good works, but were only doing the next right thing; some probably never knew how many people they have influenced with their lives; the impact they have had on others and on the world as they sought to simply live their lives to the best of their abilities.
These people are not always remarkable and can even be imperfect at times, with failings just like anyone else‘s, but in many ways this makes their faith shine even brighter, as they remind us that it does not take a ‘remarkable’ person to live in faith, and to be an example to others as they follow God’s will.
As single parents we can learn from the experience of others, who have walked a similar path in life, and not just those who have gained acclaim, but also those who are ‘unremarkable’ and who live more or less ordinary lives, meeting their challenges as they come, and managing them well, even if not always gracefully.
Christ, and those who truly carry out his ministry in the world, offer us direction, love and forgiveness; they provide us with examples to follow every day, showing us what it means to live in faith, while we raise our children to the best or our ability.
As followers of Christ ourselves, we too are called to be an example to others, as we can help to show other single parents which way to go when raising their children and facing ‘life on life’s terms’; note that we are not called to do everything right as we can learn as much from mistakes as from success…but we are called to share our experience, strength and faith with others.
We are also strong examples to our children, who DO pay attention to what we do, especially when it does not seem like they could care less about us or what we say, we are teaching them how to live in the world, how to live in faith and how to be compassionate to others.
The world always needs great people like Nelson Mandela, Mother Theresa and Dr. King; but the world, and our children would never survive with out great people like you and I, those who do their best to follow Christ, to live decent lives, treat others well, and raise our children to be gifts to the future.
Let us Pray
God, thank you for your comfort, love and forgiveness. Thank you for the gift of Christ and for those who follow his message of love and service to the world, for those who live in faith that they are doing what is right, regardless of their own personal comfort or safety. Please help us to both follow the examples of others who walk in the talk, and hold tight to their faith, as well as share the good news of your love, by living our faith out loud. Help us to be good examples of faith in action to our children and all those around us.