Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Be on guard; stay alert!

And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Mark 8 : 36

With all the fun and timeout I had with my husband as we spent about 9 days in Kerala, I had trouble in sleeping last but the previous night because of restless legs. I know it would go if I ate few bananas, but I didn’t get up as I felt lazy. I did whatever I could, to sleep, but I only slept after several hours. I had a dream/vision like never before. It was very scary. Even now I am filled with what I saw that night. I don’t know how I can write about it, but I will try. I am not saying that I am a saint and God showed me this for some reason. But I don’t want to keep it with myself, because if it was from God, then I wanted to tell others. Please bear with me as you read forward.

In my dream, I saw myself resting on my Aunt’s lap in the terrace at night. As I looked up while I was speaking, I saw the planet Saturn coming down from the Sky. It was very huge in size as it came down. The moment I showed it to my Aunts, it was shattered into pieces of fire and these pieces destroyed the buildings along with the people inside. Once it was over, many other celestial bodies fell down and destroyed things. After this, I saw waves rising up and took people inside the water bodies. I saw people including my loved ones screaming and trying to escape, but they could not. The very next moment, I saw me, going to someone (not sure who that was, but he should be a leader or a preacher) and begging him to give me a chance to speak to the people present in the camp about what I saw. He thought I was joking and so he didn’t listen to me. But the moment he saw my body shivering as I saw something coming from above, he knew I was serious. I told him that he can reach out to people who saw things with me to verify what I said.

I am not sure what happened after that. Maybe I got up from the dream. It was very long, but I am not able to explain it in words. Usually I forget what I dreamt, but this time I did not. Everything is still in my heart and it would be forever, I think. Believe me, I have never watched any movie that screened destructions like this. It may be nothing except some disturbances in my heart or it may be something that God showed to me. I don’t know. But what if it was from God? I know, one day things like these will happen as the Bible talks about the last days. I was not as serious about those last days as I am after I saw that dream.

God alone knows our deepest thoughts and desires. No one else knows our secret intentions. Maybe it is the time that we take God things seriously. The Son of God gave His life for us. He rose again and sent the Comforter, the Holy Spirit we ever need in our lives. Whatever is mentioned in the Holy Bible will happen one day. The Lord is merciful, but He will also judge us one day. Don’t even take a single minute for granted. We are not perfect, but we can ask the Perfecter for help. Let us be ready as the wise virgins. Matthew 25. We are called to conquer the world! Let us not feed the desires of flesh and struggle with the temptations that come across and lead us to sin and eventually in the hell, where there will be eternal weeping. Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. Colossians 3: 1, 2

And since you don't know when that time will come, be on guard! Stay alert! Mark 13 : 33


Friday, April 25, 2014

Lazarus' Deliverer

Because He himself suffered when He was tempted, He is able to help those who are being tempted. Hebrews 2:18

Easter is the most special day in the history that gave hope to the mankind!

Lazarus, the brother of Martha and Mary was dead four days before Jesus reached Bethany. Jesus loved that family and they loved him as well. He was not there when Lazarus was sick. Lazarus was buried when Jesus reached Bethany. His sisters were weeping. Jesus also wept. They told Jesus, “Lord, if you have been here, Lazarus would not have died.” They moved on to Lazarus’ tomb. There was a stone across the entrance. Surely there was bad odor. Yet, Jesus said, “Take away the stone. If you believed, you would see the glory of God.” He prayed and there came Lazarus alive with his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”

God’s love is the same toward everyone! He doesn’t show favoritism. He loves you as much as He loved Lazarus and his sisters. He knows when you are sick. He longs to be with you in all your struggles.  He himself was buried; but He rose again. The grave could not hold Him. Death was defeated. The ultimate victory was made possible by the perfect lamb, Jesus who sacrificed Himself on the cross for us!

Friends, today you are in any of the three situations listed below.

1.       Maybe you are still living in your past glory. You are proud to say that you had spent countless hours in prayer and meditation several years ago. But the truth is, your past glory cannot do any good to you! You should be revived each moment in your life. Bible says, “The one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” Matthew 24:13. You are hesitant to go back to where you were, as things distract you and lead you away from Christ. His arm that was stretched out on the cross is still open for you. It is time to make U-turn and come back to Him as soon as you can. Don’t take chances.

2.       Or maybe you are living a life full of guilt for the sins you have committed. You want to be out of the habits which lead you to sin, but you are not able to ask God to forgive you of your sins. Because you know you have gone to him countless times for forgiveness on the very same thing. You may feel that your prayers will not be answered. Bible clearly says, “Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.” Lamentations 3:22. He can wash you from any sin and can set you free. If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. John 8:36. You no longer need to live in guilt.

3.       Or maybe you are living a life that is pleasing to God. The best time to pray for anything is, before it happens. You may not know what is awaiting you (Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8), or what your family or friends are going through right now. In the outside people may pretend to live a holy life, but deep inside they are hurt because of the unwanted things that have done. “You are meant to be the salt of the earth and light of the world.” Matthew 5:13, 14. Breathe Jesus into someone’s life. This is the time for you to stop being content that you are safe and have a free coupon to enter into Heaven, but to stand in the gap for them and to pray for them that perish.

To summarize, what you have done thus far, doesn’t matter. God still loves you. And He wants to restore everything that you have lost so far.  He can bring back life into your holiness, deadest parts in your marriage, finances, work place, parenthood, etc…! Things that are buried deep inside can be brought to life only by the risen Lord! He knows how it feels to be buried. Pray to God that He would help open up the door that you have shut to Him long back, and guide you to take off the ugly clothes you have chosen for yourself and bring you back to the life He meant for you. He only can give you victory over the things which are defeating you over and over again!

May God bless you!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

It is contagious!

Be kind and compassionate to one another… Ephesians 4:32

Good morning, friends!

Dr. Howard Kelly was a distinguished physician who, in 1895, founded the Johns Hopkins Division of Gynecologic Oncology at Johns Hopkins University. According to Dr. Kelly's biographer, Audrey Davis, the doctor was on a walking trip through Northern Pennsylvania one spring day when he stopped by a farm house for a drink of water.  A little girl answered his knock at the door and instead of water, brought him a glass of fresh milk.  He visited with her briefly, then went his way.  Sometime later, the little girl came to him as a patient and needed surgery.  After the surgery, the bill was brought to her room and on it were the words, "Paid in full with one glass of milk."

My husband wanted me to watch an inspirational video on YouTube which resembled the above event. It was about a poor boy whose mother was sick and in need of medicine and a local food seller who helped him provide his mom, expecting nothing in return. Later after many years, his kindness was paid, by a surgeon (the poor boy), who wrote “Paid in full several years ago with soup and medicine”, on the hospital bill for the food seller’s surgery.

The kindness that is sent, will return to you! What goes around comes around! Being kind to someone who is kind to you is pretty easy, but being kind to someone who is rude to you/who hurts you is not that easy. But you still can extend your kindness to them! It is a gift from God which you can freely share with others! Each one has their own battles. You never know what they go through! ‘Tit for tat’ is the pattern of this world! But you, as a child of God, spread the ‘Kindness’ germs! It is contagious! Remember God’s kindness toward you, whenever you are tempted to shout at someone. The other person may or may not deserve it. But God loved you when you were quite unlovable.

Speak words of kindness to have attractive lips! You will look amazingly pretty/handsome without lipstick! Kindness is a language which a deaf can hear and a blind can see! Kindness provided in excess will definitely speak to hearts one day. And when you are kind to strangers, be glad that you are showing them the way to be kind, even though you may not come to know about the wonders their kindness make! 

May God bless you!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

If You want, I will!

"I am the Lord's servant," Mary answered. "Be it unto me according to Your Word." Luke 1: 38

Good morning!

Yesterday early in the morning when I was getting ready to go to office, I heard my husband speaking to me with a thin voice and to hear him better I went close to him without expecting him to wave his hand (without knowing that I went close to him) over my face with his nails on. A portion of skin under my eyes was peeled off. Since it was near the infraorbital furrow, it is not visible outside. But it is painful.

This incident has nothing to do with the message today, except this reminded me of all the hurting moments (not physical hurts, but emotional) I experienced in my life thus far because of the ones I trusted and I didn’t reciprocate, I felt like I have been sacrificing so much for nothing, to the point that, those who hurt me didn’t even know that they did. As I think too much about it, it is painful. But I believe everyone who trusts in the mortal men/women, would have the same feeling. I also understand that without my knowledge I would have also hurt others.

Every coin has two sides. I will share about the first side today, and the other side tomorrow. If you feel what you undergo is too much for you to carry, and you do not know why someone who you trusts have to do all these things to you, then the following message is for you.

I read a beautiful story which was about a young woman who was climbing the mountain and when she was hanging there on a rock ledge with hundred feet below her, lost her contact lens. Her blurred vision and the height scared her. She looked unto the Lord and prayed when she reminded herself “The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole world.” After her friends helped her reach the bottom, and she was startled to hear someone screaming, “Hey, anybody lost your contact lens?” pointing out to an ant moving very slowly carrying the contact lens. Maybe the ant told God, “God, I don’t know why You want me to carry this load. I cannot eat it and it’s awfully heavy. But, if you want me to carry it, I will.”

Friends, you are where God wants you to be. When moments like this happen, don’t try escaping from the situation, rather, obey to Him just as Mary said, “Be it unto me, Lord.” Mary obeyed to God and there was born, the Savior, to fulfill God’s plan!!! Just say to God, “Lord I do not know why You want me to carry this load. I can’t see any good out of it, and it is awfully heavy. But, if You want me to carry it, I will.” Maybe you are the ant which God uses to help someone who needs you in their struggles! God’s will for your life will not let you go places where He cannot go with you. Whatever you go through, will be for your good and God will make things happen in His time! Just stay there! Never give up!

May God bless you!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

If God is for us...

"If God is for us, who can be against us?" Romans 8:31

You have so many people around you, but still you feel you are all alone? You feel no one cares about you anymore? Your own family dejected you? You feel like you are of no use to anybody? You had faith on God, but not now, because you are constantly chewing the problem you face now and the way you keep thinking about it actually makes it so bigger day by day? Facing dreadful situations? You may have no way or a few ways to escape. But God has infinite ways for your escape.

You may think only weapons and arrows are needed for wars, but for God, winning a big battle is possible even with empty clay pots and trumpets. (Gideon in Judges 7) You may wonder how you are going to break down the huge walls you see in front of you. God can just use shouts to bring it down to the ground. (Joshua in Joshua 7) When you are scared of the mighty warriors and don’t have enough courage to face them in the battlefield, God can bring down hails from Heaven and destroy the enemy altogether. (Israelites in Joshua 10) You are frightened at giants like Goliath, but God can kill them with just a sling shot. (David in 1 Samuel 17) Today you are scared to be in the den with a hungry lion, but God can shut its mouth. (Daniel in Daniel 6) Maybe you are thrown into fire for standing for God, but God Himself can step into the fire with you and keep even your hair and robe from burning. (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in Daniel 3) You may have nothing to survive. But God can use 5 loaves of bread and 2 fishes to feed 5000+ men and still can take the 12 baskets of leftovers. (Crowd in Luke 9) There are many other miracles which are recorded in the Bible.

God chooses lowly things and does wonders. So be glad about your weaknesses, because those are the areas where you are going to see His enormous strength!

Well, but there is something which you need to do. “Cast all your cares on Him because He cares for us.” In Don Moen’s song “He never sleeps” he says, “This is more than a promise; it’s a command.” Yes, it is a command. Do you realize how big your God is? Even your mountain like problems are very small for Him, yet, He doesn’t leave you abandoned so you can handle it all alone, because, He knows it is too big for you to handle it your way. So He comes to your aid to handle it His way. If you don’t believe this, just think about those times you thought your heart was going to collapse, but God sustained you through all that and kept you safe until now.

If God is on our side, it doesn’t matter who is on the other side! You don’t have to fight the battle. Just stay on His side and watch Him fighting for you!!

Help my unbelief

Jesus said, “Everything is possible for the one who believes.” Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” Mark 9:23, 24

My American friend gifted me his Kindle Fire. (Ahhh thank you so much, Michael :) !!!) 

“Good and Perfect Gift, A: Faith, Expectations, and a Little Girl Named Penny” written by Amy Julia Becker is the first book I completed reading in my Kindle Fire. This is a mother's story of her own challenge in finding out that her daughter would be born with Down syndrome. She raises her child Penny with prayer in each activity. Down syndrome is the most common chromosome abnormality in humans, occurring in about 1 per 1000 babies born each year. It is typically associated with physical growth delays, characteristic facial features and mild to moderate intellectual disability and poor immune system. Whether you are a mother or not, this book takes you through both joyful and hurtful experiences and also in raising a child with Down syndrome and also through trusting Him in the weakest moments of your life. I was inspired after reading Amy’s journey with Penny and after some months I forgot about it, until someone reminded me about it.

I heard a young lady sharing her testimony in my office. During her prenatal screening and other diagnostic testing, the doctors found out that her baby might be a victim to Down syndrome. The first half of the book I read came true in the life of someone who I know. How painful it would have been for her and her husband! Doctors wanted her to abort the fetus, but they didn’t agree. They just prayed and prayed and prayed. They waited upon the Lord. They both didn’t share this with anyone. I can’t imagine how a pregnant woman can undergo such a pain in her heart and at the same time focus on her health so it doesn’t affect the baby inside. Both faith and unbelief would have tossed her back and forth until the delivery. What a terrific situation to be in! But after the baby is born, to their surprise and to God’s glory, they saw her to be normal. Praise God!

What a miraculous answer is the baby to them!!!! My eyes were filled with tears as she shared this testimony. How blessed we are to see our babies healthy and active and how grateful we should be to Him!  

The message is, we may find no way out. But God helps our unbelief. He loves us when we are honest with Him. In Mark 9, when the father of a demon possessed boy cried to Him, “Lord, I took my son to your disciples. They could not drive the evil spirit out. I do believe that everything is possible for the one who believes. Please help my unbelief,” God rebuked the evil spirit and healed the boy. He answered the father’s prayer. When disciples asked why they could not drive the spirit out, He answered, “This can be driven only by prayer.”

What are you waiting for? What kills your belief and leaves you unattended? No matter what it is, you know the key. You know the secret behind unbelief and how to overcome it. Start praying and keep praying. God will help you overcome unbelief and you will start seeing streams in the desert land.
Praise be to the Lord. May God bless you!

Sweeter than honey!

How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth! Psalm 119:103


Good morning!

Last Sunday I sat next to an elderly woman in the Church. After the sermon started she waved her hand at me and said she would like me to mark the verses the preacher preached, in her Bible. Her Bible looked a bit old with stitches on its velvet cover. I took her Bible and pen to mark a verse as she told me. As soon as I finished marking, I returned it to her. Whenever the preacher mentioned a verse, she handed it back to me for help. To be honest, this was the first time I paid much attention to each and every single reference for all the Bible verses that were mentioned in the sermon. The reason why she needed my help was obvious. She has problem with her vision due to her age. But her thirst toward God’s Word and joy in His presence in spite of all the difficulties she faced surprised me. As I went through the pages of her Bible I could understand that she approaches the one sitting next to her every week for help, as I saw several types of marks made by people. She offered whatever she had with her (hey wait! I didn’t spy on her. It was an accident that I saw her while she offered.) and I guessed that she might have to walk while returning to her house.

I am sure God smiles when He thinks of her! What an awesome moment it would be for someone to have God smiling when He thinks of them!!!
Her seriousness toward His Word is something that cannot be compared with ours, who work in MNC’s, having multiple versions of Bible, in all possible sizes and designs, not only in our hand, but also in all the electronic devices we own, Textual, Audio, Video, what not, yet having no time to turn the pages to actually know what He speaks to us, thereby wasting so much of sacrifices the translators had made and hurting the Omnipotent God. A dusty Bible leads to dirty lives!

The author of Psalm 119 tells us that God’s Word is sweeter than honey to his mouth. Even today there are so many countries who shut their doors to God’s Word, yet, their people long to read. You and I have the most treasurable gift in our hands. Only when we realize that it is not a mortal book written by several authors, but a love letter from our loving Father, which has solutions to all the problems one can face in this cruel world, we would love to spend time reading and meditating it.

Diane Moody in her book, “Confessions of a prayer slacker”, shares with us that she visualizes that the Lord waits in her living room with a coffee pot and 2 mugs (one for Him and one for her) every morning. So she cannot sleep as soon as this scene comes to her mind. My sister-in-law always had an empty chair next to her whenever she studied so the Lord could mentor her. I have seen people counting numbers so they can fall into sleep, but my mother-in-law surprises me when she says she always recite the Bible verses if she doesn’t feel sleepy during her bed time.

Yes, there are so many people who adore God’s Word! Their soul is well! Now it is your turn. I am sure you too can new find ways just like them!