He Died So You Won’t Perish

Ezekiel 33: 11 

Say to them: ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn, turn from your evil ways!…..
The Lord has no pleasure in seeing the wicked perish in their sins. He does not wish for them to be destroyed in their ways. And that’s probably why He has time and again given warnings for all to return to Him, to forsake their evil ways and return to God. There is always a second chance. You are never too far from His grace and forgiveness, if only you would return to Him. 
The most quoted and well know Bible verse has to be John 3:16. 
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
There is no distinction or demarcation mentioned here. He died for all. He died so that “whoever” believes in Him will be given eternal life. He died for you and me. He has no desire for any of His children to go astray. I say, children, because we are all His children and we belong to Him. But the Word is specific. As much as He doesn’t desire for anyone to perish, there is also the clause that you need to believe in Him and live for Him in order to get hold of the eternal life He has in store for you and me. 
As I stated earlier, you are not too late or too far out of reach from His grace. Turn to Him, focus on Him alone in your journey on this earth. Everything else you see in this world will fade away. Only His Word remains. 

I Trust In You

Psalm 55: 23
“…. but I will trust in You”

Throughout the psalm, David talks of his troubles and pain. But the last line of the last verse ends on a beautiful note, “But I will trust in You”. It is David declaring that he has a thousand problems but he has decided to “cast his burden on the Lord (v. 22) and trust in Him. That was his faith.

You may be having several problems, you may feel cast down and broken, your current situation may feel like it’s spinning out of your control. Hoping for the tide of despair to pass by may seem like a distant dream. But even when it seems like you are standing in the midst of a storm, do you have the courage to say “I will trust in You”? It is not saying that the problems have disappeared. It is a purposeful confession that you have the faith to trust in Him who is bigger than all your problems. David had that faith. So can we.

Sanctity in His Work

Acts 6: 1, 3
Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, there arose a complaint against the Hebrews by the Hellenists, because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution… Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business;…

In the above passage, we are introduced to a predicament the church faced at the time. There were a group of people who complained that the widows were neglected during the daily distribution. In the NIV version, it states clearly .. “the daily distribution of food.” Now, what was the church’s response?

In verse 3, it says, they decided to choose 7 men “of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom”. It seems quite strange to think that for something as trivial as serving food, they would take so much care when appointing someone to overlook it. But that was the church’s approach to the matter. From this we can learn how much importance and reverence they gave to matters pertaining to the Lord’s work.

My dear brothers and sisters, God doesn’t have a careless attitude to His Kingdom or for the work of the church. When appointing people in our churches, whether it be to overlook the sound system or for serving food or playing instruments, are we choosing those who are of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit ? Do we even think twice about it?

According to us, the important ministries such as preaching, healing, prophesying – these are the ministries where utmost care need to be taken. Let this passage be a reminder to us that anything we do in the name of the Lord carries weight and is of importance in His sight. The victory of the first churches lay in the importance they gave for even seemingly trivial matters.

Let’s try and bring a change in the way we see each ministry being done in the house of God. When we are able to see the importance with which God sees it, everything that we do will automatically be done with the reverence and sanctity that God deserves and desires.

God Has Made Me Who I Am

God Has Made Me Who I Am

Are you satisfied with who you are? In looks and character? Are you always comparing yourself with someone and wishing that you were someone else? Is your life one of dissatisfaction just because you don’t have that ‘one trait’ that makes you attractive as somebody else?

Instead of always being at the complaint counter, why don’t we realize that each one of us is unique and God has built-in character traits or outward features exactly according to His plan? If He has given us a short stature or a frail physique or a quiet nature and not given that to another person, He has a purpose for it. It’s for us to be satisfied and not be discontented, because our Creator has formed us perfectly. Let’s ponder over some verses from Psalm 139.

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

– Psalm 139:13-16

Many of the greatest preachers or missionaries of the world had their handicaps but God used them in a mighty way. Many of the Biblical characters were handicapped in at least one character-trait but God transformed them and used them to bring light into the world of the lost. Even today the light in their lives shines on us.They were given to us as examples so that we don’t become discouraged. Don’t’ we know very well the impulsiveness of Peter that landed him in troublesome situations? Look at the difference in his life after he knew the Christ and the impact that he made in Christendom. Elijah gave in to depressing thoughts even after he ‘brought down fire from heaven’ but God strengthened him to go on. Fanny Crosby, the great hymn writer, was blind from birth but she wouldn’t have it otherwise! She took her disability positively and wrote hymns that are embedded deep in our heart. We can feel His presence in them because she ‘saw’ her Creator in all His glory.

Many a time we watch the ‘smart’ people of the world and think that they ‘have it all’. But let us not forget that they too might be longing for some character trait that we have in us. Many ‘quiet’ people don’t get a chance to come up in life, even in spiritual circles. Others don’t see the dynamo that’s within them. But God does. Each one of us is special to God. We are precious to Him.

Since you are precious and honored in my sight, and because I love you…

– Isaiah 43:4

He looks at what’s inside our heart. Let’s thank Him for how He has made us, for He can use that ‘particular’ trait in us for His glory, if we yield to His will in our lives. Each one can contribute to the furtherance of His kingdom with the uniqueness that God has given him or her. No one need to think of himself as small or worthless. There wouldn’t be any variety in life if all were made of the same nature or caliber. The only similarity is that we are all made in the likeness or image of God.

So God created man in his own image. – Genesis 1:27

The ultimate purpose of God is,

For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. – Romans8: 29

One day all these differences will be null and void when we rule with our Lord and Saviour in eternity with a glorious body. Amen.

The Act Of Reciprocation

What has the Lord not done for you?

Is there any area of life that He has not touched?

Doesn’t He know every thought that goes through your mind?

Think of all the wonderful gifts He has bestowed on you,

Gifts and blessings without number

Remember the greatest sacrifice He made for you,

That of giving up His beloved Son to suffer pain and die on the Cross,

To grant us salvation and eternal life.

What about forgiving our iniquities and forgetting them too!

What worth He has given us to hold our heads high and live.

Daily loading us with benefits and protecting us with His strong shield

Counselling us with heavenly wisdom and directing us through unknown paths.

Shepherding us through valleys and mountains,

Guarding us from the evil one and being a strong anchor in the tempests of life.

Preparing us for eternity and perfecting our character.

Volumes could be written about His provision, love and care!!

BUT, just ask yourselves—What are you giving Him instead?

Are you reciprocating all His love and concern for you?

Is it a one way traffic in which only He has to fulfill His promises?

Do you take time to listen to His sweet voice and talk to Him calmly?

Or is it just a long list of never ending wants and desires of your own?

Are you just using Him as a heavenly vending machine?

Don’t you like it when others thank you for your help to them?

Or someone does a kind deed in return for yours?

Or praise you for an achievement or for a helping hand?

How disappointed you feel when those who you have helped just forget you,

Or ignore you or even act against you!

If you expect at least an ounce of reciprocation for your worldly deeds,

How much more will our heavenly Father be delighted?

When we thank Him wholeheartedly, remember His countless mercies,

And live according to His will and spread His Word all around,

Deliver those lost in the world of darkness and Bring more souls to His kingdom?

It doesn’t take any effort to give at least a small share back

To the One Who gave HIS All for you and me,

To the One Who is the reason why we are alive and live,

To the One Who is waiting for us to be perfect day by day,

So that He can come back and take us to be with Him forever!!

Remember—Reciprocate God’s Love!!

[facebook][/facebook] Reposted from http://churchofgodjebelali.org/2014/01/16/the-act-of-reciprocation/

What shall I render to the Lord for all His benefits toward me? [How can I repay Him for all His bountiful dealings?]
I will lift up the cup of salvation and deliverance and call on the name of the Lord.
I will pay my vows to the Lord, yes, in the presence of all His people.
– Psalm 116:12-14