Soul Food : Choose to be a blessing- Wednesday Chapel Sermon by Rev. Muchanyereyi

By Jeffrey Murungweni- Co- Editor

What is that one thing that, if someone were to do it for you, your joy would be out of this world? What is that one thing that, if someone were to do it for you, that sad face would pop up into a radiant face, beaming with a wide smile? I am sure whatever it is, you’re already imagining having it and how uplifted you would be feeling. For some, it might be a physical gift that could help in a certain area; for others, it might be something more sentimental, like a hug. No matter what needs we might have, just imagine the joy we get when someone comes to meet us at our point of need. Now, let’s twist the question a bit: What if you’re that person who brings such a feeling to someone else?

This was the main question behind Rev. Muchanyereyi’s preaching during the Wednesday Chapel Service on the 29th of March. Her preaching was based on Philippians Chapter 1, verses 3-4. The passage reads, “I thank my God in all my remembrance of you. In every prayer of mine, I always make my entreaty and petition for you all with joy (delight).” This is a letter Paul was writing to the saints of Philippi, and these two particular verses are part of the opening text of the letter. Here, Paul starts by expressing his gratitude to God for the saints in Philippi. This is not just the surface-level kind of gratitude where one just thanks you and that’s it. It’s a kind of gratitude where one goes deep to thank his own God for your presence in his life. Paul goes on to talk about how he also prays for this church, and more importantly, with joy. For example, we find it hard to pray for some people, but there will always be one or a few people to whom we can devote hours of prayer. This is the kind of love that Paul had for the church in Philippi. 

As Rev. Muchanyereyi was talking on this matter, she brought up an interesting question: Is your absence in a place celebrated by people, or do they miss you when you’re not there? Now, this question requires some deep self-introspection. It needs us as individuals to analyze our lives and see whether people love to be around us or not. This comes down to how we treat the people around us. As humans, we are bound to be more tolerant and accommodating to the people who make us feel loved. The opposite is also true. If someone makes you feel bad and all the other negative emotions, as social beings, we tend to move away from those people, and we desire their absence more than their presence. So for Paul to still be grateful to God for the Philippians church just goes on to show how much of a blessing they were to Paul.

Being a blessing to someone does not mean that you’re perfect in everything about yourself. It simply means that you do more good to someone so that he or she overlooks any bad you do. We cannot conclude that the church in Philippi was perfect, but obviously, it had more positives than negatives. This also applies to us. The moment we decide to hold onto the negatives that someone has done to us, we become blind to the good that is coming our way through that person. I also took this message as a wake-up call to become a greater vessel of agape love for other people. Sometimes just a simple hello, a smile, some help, and the smallest of presents can go a long way in brightening someone’s day. As they always say, it’s the little things that matter. If we all saw ourselves as the means through which God expresses His love to the people, how much better would our world be?

Our chaplain then left us with a few words of wisdom to adopt in our lives and some questions to ponder. God has blessed us to become blessings to others. This means that we live lives of service to humankind for its betterment, and when we all have such a mindset, we improve the lives of others. May God continue to teach us to be thoughtful people in all that we do. As I close off this week’s edition of Soul Food, I would like you to remember what God is saying over your life. You’ve been chosen to be a blessing to others, you are a vessel of love, you are amazing, and the world shall testify to the goodness of God because of you.