Discipling the Next Generations

Our Invitation from Mary

Rev. Charissa Suli with her son Azariah at 5 months

By Rev Charissa Suli, Assembly National Consultant

News of any pregnancy is an unsettling, life-changing event. Believe me I know. I’m a mother of four children. I have three daughters aged 21, 19, and 13 and a son aged two years old. So, I know from experience just how much the arrival of a new child is a life-changing event. But hold a newborn, and all of a sudden you experience the world in a completely different way. Driving around shopping centres at Christmas with a baby in the back and you never think of cars and parking lots in the same way. As they grow, the world seems edged with ledges and corners and sharp objects.

We hear in this advent and Christmas season a story of an unwed mother who bears the son of God in her womb. She invites us on a journey in Luke’s gospel to participate in the birthing, raising, mourning and eventually, following Jesus Christ our Lord.

Mary gives us an example as a person of faith, called by God, struggling with the daily demands of her life. It is this Mary who can help us prepare for the coming of her son and the New Year ahead.

Christmas is not always a joyful time for people and in the year that has passed, many of our younger generations have experienced great struggle, loss and pain.

Mary is inviting us this season to get close to a God who calls us to bear him in our bodies and with our lives.

Unlike Mary, we do not literally carry the flesh and blood of Jesus within us, even so, we are invited to bear his Spirit and share his presence with the world. We can hold onto God’s promise who moves about this world feeling everything we feel in whatever situation or generation we may be.

God promises to come alongside us, even if this season is a time of wilderness for some.

It is my prayer that this Christmas you will look to a baby boy who has come to give you eternal joy and peace, new hope, and new life and that the Christ child will be born again in you.

Fakamalo ‘atu kihe memipa kotoa pe ‘o e siakale ko ‘eni pea malo homou poupou mai kihe misiona ‘o e tisaipale ‘o e to’utangata ka hoko mai.  ‘Ofa ke mou ma’u ha kilisimasi fonu kelesi’ia pea mo monu’ia pea ke hoko mai hotau ‘Eiki ko Sisu kalaisi ‘o fa’o fale ‘i homou ngaahi famili takitaha.  Ofa atu moe lotu.

Thank you to each member of our Discipling Next Generation Circle for all the support you have given to this ministry of discipling the next generations.  May you all have a blessed Christmas filled with grace and great hope and may God who is Jesus fill your homes and families with his Holy Spirit.  Love and Prayers always.