Meeting Sundays   –   10:30   –   Oehler’s Barn 4503 Ridge Rd, Charlotte, NC 28269   – 704.838.5350

Your Name

By James Metsger 

Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have. (Philippians 1:27-30)
You haven’t met Kenny, but you should. He is my mom’s cousin and my dad’s life-long friend. Growing up, if you were to ask me to describe Kenny, I would say that Kenny is funny, loud, and not always a fan of social norms. Competition came naturally to him whether on a basketball court or a baseball diamond. Even on the golf course, a true gentlemen’s game, his competitive nature would get the best of him. He never broke anything, but occasionally he would yell “helicopter” and I’d look up to see his golf club whirling through the air. He was pretty good at catching his flying clubs. On one such day, after watching him in a rage, I missed a very makeable putt and proceeded to follow Kenny’s lead by throwing my putter high to the heavens. Unlike him though, I fumbled the landing and my club took a huge divot in the nicely manicured green, a huge “no-no” in civilized golf etiquette Frustrated by my actions, my dad asked, “What were you thinking?!” To which I responded with all the maturity of a 20-year-old, “Kenny did it!” My dad said, “You’re not Kenny. You’re James.” No disrespect to Kenny, but my dad was reminding me I’m my own man, responsible for my own actions, and I needed to walk in a manner worthy of my own name. Paul gave the same advice when he said, “Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ.” Of course, the big difference is that we are not to live a life worthy of our name but worthy of Christ’s name. Looking to Christ as our model, we walk as representatives of his name and his gospel.

What does it look like to live a life worthy of the gospel?

For Paul, it meant being united with other believers, standing firm in the face of opposition, striving for the gospel, and possessing fearlessness in the face of opposition. Paul uses a picture of a military force standing side by side, locked arm in arm, to describe what it looks like for you and me to live a life worthy of the gospel. Our faith unites us with other believers, and we must be committed to representing Jesus’ name in the fallen world we inhabit. 

Respond:

In what ways is your life marked by a desire to live a life worthy of the gospel?