Lent – Day 16 – FAITH requires ACTION

FAITHWITHOUTWORKS

What we believe becomes who we are. It reflects in all aspects of our character, behaviour, relationships and the way we live our lives .

God encourages us through His Word to have faith that is filled with action, out of love and reverence for God. And not merely do God talks without any God love in it. He calls it utter nonsense when someone does that

Dear friends, do you think you’ll get anywhere in this if you learn all the right words but never do anything? Does merely talking about faith indicate that a person really has it? For instance, you come upon an old friend dressed in rags and half-starved and say, “Good morning, friend! Be clothed in Christ! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!” and walk off without providing so much as a coat or a cup of soup—where does that get you? Isn’t it obvious that God-talk without God-acts is outrageous nonsense?

James 2:14-17

One thing that stands out among the biblical heroes mentioned in the Bible is the unshakeable faith they had in their God, their Father AND  what they did about their faith in their practical lives. They knew that it was impossible to please God without faith. They had the confidence in what they hoped for and assurance in what they do not see.

In the world’s eyes ,Noah appeared foolish when he started building the ark but Noah believed in what God said and put his faith to action. He was not a people pleaser rather a God pleaser. Noah was not afraid to stand out as he trusted in God’s plan . He built the ark just the way God had instructed him and saved his family

By faith, Noah built a ship in the middle of dry land. He was warned about something he couldn’t see, and acted on what he was told. The result? His family was saved. His act of faith drew a sharp line between the evil of the unbelieving world and the rightness of the believing world. As a result, Noah became intimate with God

Hebrews 11:7

Abraham put to action his extraordinary, unwavering belief in God when God told him to travel to an unknown place and God did not tell him where he was going.

Abraham said yes to God’s call to travel to an unknown place that would become his home. When he left he had no idea where he was going. By an act of faith he lived in the country promised him, lived as a stranger camping in tents. Isaac and Jacob did the same, living under the same promise. Abraham did it by keeping his eye on an unseen city with real, eternal foundations—the City designed and built by God. evil of the unbelieving world and the rightness of the believing world. As a result, Noah became intimate with God

Hebrews 11:8

Hebrews 11 lists all the biblical heroes that put their faith to action, trusting God one step at a time in their unknown journey. They had complete confidence that even though they have no idea about how their journey will end, they trusted in His promises and had unwavering faith that when God ordains their steps there is nothing to be afraid of or worried about . They looked to God for help and just followed what God had asked them to do. They put their faith to action.

For the reflection part, how does that ‘faith in action’ work for you and me in our practical lives ? Ephesians 5:1-2 encourages us to ‘wake up from our sleep’

Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that

Ephesians 5:1-2

We all have mountains in our own private battles that we are struggling with. Of course, we all have been praying for that new job, for that life partner, for that new home , for that new car, for that intimacy with God. Other than praying, are we doing anything about it ? Any ACTION to co-operate with God for His promises to come true in our lives ?

I am a strong believer in prayer and His miracle working power. I also strongly believe that God wants us to use that mustard seed of faith that He has given us , to work along with Him, to co-operate with Him to make His plans establish on this earth for His glory. It’s God that puts that dream , that desire in your heart that you have right now and probably He has confirmed that through a prophecy. It’s time to trust His word and set into action

God has that wonderful job for you. But He needs you to use that God given talents in your interview from your end so He can sprinkle His favour for the best outcome. God will heal you but He needs you to go to the doctor and have your medication. Of course, if God has promised you a certain ministry, you need to equip yourself in that by studying and learning in that area.

My prayer for you today is that May this day be a day of ‘faith filled with action’ for you.

May you find that little mustard seed of faith that God put in your heart and put that faith to action TODAY

Because you’re not yet taking God seriously,” said Jesus. “The simple truth is that if you had a mere kernel of faith, a poppy seed, say, you would tell this mountain, ‘Move!’ and it would move. There is nothing you wouldn’t be able to tackle.”

Matt 17:20

Stay Blessed in Him

 

 

 

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Lent – Day 14 – RESIST the devil and FLEE to GOD

FLEETOGOD

The Bible gives us many valuable examples on dealing with temptation. Lessons that apply to our practical life and very relevant for our day-to-day lives

One of my favourite scriptures that I stand upon, when I am battling negative thoughts and doubts that play up with my mind is James 4:7

 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you- James 4:7

What we need to note here is that some of these negative thoughts and doubts don’t even exist in our real minds. They just pop up out of nowhere and start taking away your peace for no apparent reason. Such thoughts from the devil captivate us and bind us so if trapped we don’t think of a way out but rather we sit there meditating on that destructive thinking and feel helpless / hopeless for ourselves, drowning in a pool of self pity and despair

When was Jesus led by the spirit  in the wilderness to be tempted and tested by the devil. When Jesus fasted 40 days and 40 nights and while he was still hungry, the devil tried to tempt Him to use His power to turn the stones into bread

 If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread – Matt 4:3

Jesus resisted the Devil with the Word of God. He replied

“It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God – Matt 4:4

The devil did not want to give up. The devil took Him to the highest point of the temple in the Holy city and tempted Jesus to test the promises of God, by saying

If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:

“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
  and they will lift you up in their hands,
  so that you will not strike your foot against a stone – Matt 4:6

Jesus confronted the devil again with the Word of God. He replied

It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test’ Matt 4:7

The devil wanted to give one final try this time before accepting defeat

Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”- Matt 4:8

This time again, Jesus stood strong with the Word of God against the devil. He replied

 “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only – Matt 4:10

This time around, the devil left Jesus alone , and the angels came and attended Him

When trapped in a net of temptation, the first armour to our rescue is the Word of God. The devil is a liar and he needs to confronted with the TRUTH that is the WORD OF GOD.

Anyone can know the Word of God, even the devil knows Jesus and knows the Word of God enough to tempt Him, even Him who created the Word. What is really important here is the right interpretation of the Word of God and the proper application of it in our day-to-day lives. The Word of God cannot be twisted and re-told for want of attraction of a bunch of audience or just to make it sound more interesting. Word of God is true and interesting in itself. There is no editing required.

When temptation sends you an invitation at your door step, RESIST him and FLEE to GOD.

My prayer for you today is for you is from Ephesians 6:10-18, for you to realise that there is evil out in the word and that evil can be defeated if we stand against it with the Word of God and all that He has empowered us with to combat the devil.

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.  Ephesians 6:10-18

 

Stay Blessed in Him

 

 

Lent – Day 13 – Magnitude of His Love

magnitude-of-gods-love.jpg

On a weekend, my family decided we would have a spin on the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel. What better way to catch a bird’s eye view of spectacular Melbourne than on this stunning giant wheel. The above picture was one of the many breathtaking views taken on that day.

When I looked at the wheel from afar, it did not catch my attention that much. It was just an ordinary wheel for me. But when I took a ride on one of those spacious cabins and got a closer look of the wheel , the way it is built and the way it takes us on a spin to a spectacular 360 degree view of Melbourne made me appreciate the brains behind this amazing work. The closer I chose to look the more I observed and learnt

In God’s kingdom, for one to actually grasp the MAGNITUDE of HIS LOVE, one needs to actually understand what God did for them. The more closer we get to God, the more we will start to understand His heartbeat.

Paul talks about grasping God’s love in Ephesians 3:17-19

So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3:17-19

God’s love is PERSISTENT,CONSISTENT , SELFLESS and UNCONDITIONAL

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Romans 5:8

We sometimes feel so unworthy of His Love, this great love. We get deceived by the words of the devil ‘ who can love us?’ , ‘ why will anyone love a bad person like me?’ , ‘ If you know what I did , you would not even want to talk to me?’ . The truth is the devil is a liar and he only comes to steal and destroy. He can’t stand to see God’s plans manifest in our lives and he will try his very best to uproot the good seeds set to blossom on our prosperous ground. But God says perfect love casts out all fear. So we have that grace to come boldly to the throne of God, without any pretence.

Today is an invitation for you to come to the Lord , JUST AS YOU ARE.

God loves you and He proved His love by sending His only son to die for your sins so you can have an eternal life. It is already done. Now it is your turn to accept the free gift and reap an eternal life of hope and peace

Hold on to this promise of God’s faithful love for you. He has already EMBRACED YOU AS HIS VERY OWN

So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us? And who would dare tangle with God by messing with one of God’s chosen? Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us—who was raised to life for us!—is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us. Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, not backstabbing, not even the worst sins listed in Scripture

They kill us in cold blood because they hate you.
We’re sitting ducks; they pick us off one by one

None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us. I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.

Romans 8:36-39

Stay Blessed in Him

 

 

Lent – Day 12 – Disk Space FULL

word2

Time and Time again there is ONE issue that gets me ALL the time. I try my hardest but still FAIL at it. I am sure  some of you would have come across this most annoying issue, that is if you own a phone or a computer. DISK SPACE FULL

Okay, I am not a big MAC person but I do use an iPhone with a HUGE 128GB storage. STILL I have this constant issue of my iPhone getting full as I keep installing applications as I please and take pictures as I please. As a result, when I REALLY need to capture a cute moment of my daughter or install an app that I really need , I JUST CAN’T. There is NO OTHER way than for me to delete unwanted stuff from my iPhone for me to upload the stuff that I really need.

Our human lives mirror this iPhone storage issue a lot. We often fill our life’s vacuum and empty feelings with things that are our wants and that makes us feel better, temporarily. Let’s be honest here. How many of us in those despair moments of life have had a pity party to ourselves, with loads of chocolate on the bed and watching emotional movies JUST feeling sorry for ourselves. I have been down that road and it did not take long for me to realise that , that path was literally self gratification and self destruction. I am all for self-care but there is a fine line between self-care and self-pity. I learnt that despair moments are overcome with praise moments with God. In as much ridiculous as it sounds, it is REAL and it has ALWAYS worked for me

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Lent – Day 10 – Gospel in a Nutshell

jesus saves

Jesus came to the world to die for our sins. Death has to be defeated on the Cross so you and I can have an eternal life. Jesus rose again after 3 days thus offering the humanity an opportunity to live an eternal life. Anyone that believes in God , God gives them the right to be called His children and partake in the eternal life.

John 3:16 gives the message of the Bible in a nutshell

This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him.

John 3:16

There was a man called Saul in the Bible, who initially persecuted Christians. He was the one that lead a major persecution against Christians in Jerusalem. On the road to Damascus, Saul made a miraculous turnaround which is recorded in the Bible in the Book of Acts.He witnessed the Christ  he was persecuting and his life was never  the same. He became the chosen vessel of God to proclaim His good news to the nations around the world. He became knows as Paul after his conversion to Christ and his life  was transformed for the glory of God. God’s love is transformational and life changing for good.

Below is what Paul preached about the gospel to the ends of the world.

Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters,[a] of the Good News I preached to you before. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it. It is this Good News that saves you if you continue to believe the message I told you—unless, of course, you believed something that was never true in the first place.[b]

I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said

1 Corinthians 15:1-4

God’ love is so deep to reach you even in your deepest valleys and His love is so strong to deliver you even from the impossible of the impossible. His love for you stretches above the skies and beyond the seas. He promises to be with you to the very end of age. There can be no friend like Jesus that you can gain on this earth and He extends His love to you today. All you need is to RECEIVE His unconditional love for you to experience it

How ? BY BELIEVING IN HIM

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is LORD,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

Romans 10: 9 -10

My prayer for you today my friend is that you will open your heart to receive His love. My deepest desire is for you to taste and see that the Lord is good. May this be a day of resurrection in your lives. The choice is yours ! May you choose the Heavens above and let Him shine through your lives

Stay Blessed in Him

 

Lent – Day 8 – Let Him BREW your life

brew

As I was driving today and praying about the devotion tonight, I had the word BREW pop in my mind.  By the time I drove back home, I knew exactly what tonight’s post will be about ! I absolutely love the way God speaks words into my heart !

I am a big fan of a freshly brewed coffee. Just enough for me to refresh my tired mind and boost my day ahead. Or should I say that is what gets me out of bed everyday morning.

To brew a classic cup of coffee, one needs to master a few fundamentals to perfect the technique. According to an article published by the National Coffee Association How to Brew a Coffee, you first need to get the brewing essentials right like the equipment, the beans, freshness, the grind, the water, coffee-water ratio, water temperature and most importantly the brewing time, which is an important flavour factor.

For a coffee to reach its perfect flavour and colour, it needed to be left to brew. It has to go through a series of defined processes, for the desired outcome. Research proves that if a coffee is over- extracted ( the brew time is too long ) or under – extracted ( the brew is too short ) , the very essence of coffee is lost

When God destined our lives on this earth, He set up a ‘brewing ‘ stage for each of our lives. Everyone’s ‘brewing ‘ stage totally different and uniquely varying to everyone else’s. Those ‘brewing’ stages include stages of yearning for God, learning about God and growing in God. Those ‘brewing’ stages set us up developmentally in what God has planned for our lives. Those’ brewing’ stages teach us the virtue of patience and the importance of waiting in His presence. Those ‘brewing’ stages bring us one step closer to God and bring us a revelation of who God really is

Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day. Psalm 139:16

The ‘brewing’ stage of God in Joseph’s life setup him for a greater purpose that God destined for his life. Joseph did not allow the length of his ‘brewing’ stage tamper with his God’s love for Him and his God given dreams. He was steadfast in God’s faithfulness to him and persevered trusting in His grace and mercy. And eventually Joseph’s ‘brewing’ stage came to an end, with a sweet aroma of God’s goodness and unfailing plans being proclaimed to the ends of the earth.
20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people. Gen 50:20
You might be going through a ‘brewing’ stage in your life, where things are super slow and situations seem impossible. My encouragement for you today is to HANG ON to that ‘brewing’ stage that God has placed in your life right now,  for at the end of it is your BREAKTHROUGH. Make sure you add the right ingredients during that stage, Word of God and fellowship with God for your life to be a sweet aroma to the Lord.
Let your life BREW in Him , with the Hope and Blessed Assurance that He will work all things for good
28 And we know that God causes everything to work together[a] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28
My Prayer for you is as you wait for Him and on Him patiently as He BREWS your life, May every promise of God you are clinging onto speak life into your situation. May He bring breakthrough in your situation like you have never seen before. May He reveal to you the depths of His unconditional love for you
In Jesus Name
Amen
Stay Blessed in Him

 

 

 

 

Lent – Day 4 – Our Life Storywriter

craftsmanship

As I reflect on my journey with God so far in my Christian life, few things that stand out for me is God’s faithful love for me, His incredible patience at my ( well, not so often ) childlike tantrums and the amazing strength He provides always whenever I need it

Life experiences teach us some valuable life lessons. So often God has reminded me that My Story is My Own and I can’t live someone else’s story. My story is My Own and someone else can’t live mine. But God is the one that orchestrates all our stories

We often get caught with the ‘game of comparison’ due to which  we either elevate ourselves than others or underestimate our lives. The result is either pride or discouragement. Somewhere between these two we need to find a balance to live at peace with each other.

It so happens in Christian prayer life, we always see God’s miracle power at action and rather than taking encouragement from that happening we ask God to do EXACTY the SAME thing for us

Some conversations with God that might ring a bell

‘ God, I have been asking for a child. Can you please bless me EXACTLY like the way you blessed my friend when they prayed ?’

God, I have been praying for a job. Can you please bless me EXACTLY the way you did to that family ?’

‘ God,  I have been asking for healing for my sickness. You healed that person. Can you heal me JEXACTLY the way You healed my friend ? ‘

See, the issue here is not asking God to provide or heal. The issue here is asking God to something for your life EXACTLY the way He did in your friend’s life . When we start comparing our lives to someone else’s , we are setting ourselves for the enemy’s trap of ‘envy’ . When we do that we miss out on the BIGGER picture of God’s unique plan for our lives, plan that He intends to bless us and not harm us, just because we lack the trust and patience to take His guided path

God has created each of us unique and for sure each of us have a storyline that is far different to each of us. Don’t try to write someone’s story on your storyline , when you have got your own to write

4-5 Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.

Galatians 6:4-5

Stand on God’s promises not on other people’s experiences. You are God’s masterpiece. God created you unique. There is no one like you and no one can be like you.

We are God’s Masterpiece

Ephesians 2: 10

My encouragement to you today is to pray your heart out to God and place all your supplications to Him WITHOUT comparing your life to others. When you have a sense of belonging in God’s kingdom which comes with your constant fellowship with God, you will gradually learn to trust Him and God loves it when His children put that mustard seed of faith to action.

REFLECTION FOR YOU

Read this prayer aloud to Jesus and ask Him for guidance for your life

3. Psalm 119:73-74 You made me; you created me. Now give me the sense to follow your commands. May all who fear you find in me a cause for joy, for I have put my hope in your word.

Stay Blessed in Him

LENT – DAY 2 – PATHWAY TO JESUS

pathway

Born into a traditional hindu family, I have always tried to get close to the various hindu dieties doing numerous pooja’s and keeping up with the rigorous rituals. I always tried to please the hindu dieties with many sacrifices and believed in the concept of rebirth and karma, which is a concept of one’s belief that past beneficial effects are derived from past beneficial actions and harmful effects from past harmful actions. In my search for God, I got caught up with the so many rituals that I performed so well religiously but still lacked something. I had no knowledge of the various hindu dieties I worshipped, I don’t even know them and instead of reverence for them I had fear gripping my heart that if I do something wrong those dieties will punish me. I lacked a fellowship, a real relationship with those dieties. I felt empty inside

Then I heard about Jesus. Firstly I could not even believe that Jesus was God born as man and took my place on the Cross so I could live an eternal life. I had my heart filled with questions ‘ I don’t even know Jesus so why will He die for me ? ‘ , ‘ If He is God why could He just not save me ?’ , ‘ Why should He die ?’ ‘ Is this a myth or a real happening ?’ As a young teenager my heart tried to reason out every possible thing and make sense to my logical mind

At that time, one of my friends gave me a Bible to read which turned out to be a  Book of Life for me.

As I began reading, learning and pondering on the words in the Bible, John 3:31  became true in my life.

 If you continue in My words, you truly are My disciples

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”…John 3:31-32

I had an encounter with Jesus through His Word. I realised that God loves me so much that He chose to die for me, while I was a sinner. He did the same for you too. Such is His unconditional love for everyone in this world.

Romans 5:7-9

Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

God’s love for us is unconditional, unbeatable and uncomparable.

Isaiah 53: 4-5

Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering,

yet we considered Him punished by God, stricken by Him, and afflicted.

5But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities;

the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

All of us in our lives have gone through a search season where we are trying to find answers for something in our lives. This lent season I encourage you to discover your pathway to Jesus. No matter your journey, new believer , non-believer or a believer for years, there is always treasures to be found in the kingdom of God. The treasure is discoverable only when you are on the right track towards your destination

My pathway to Jesus has ended with a life that I own that is not worried about anything. A life that I can live trusting my God as I know He provides, He cares and He protects. Through this journey I am a proud owner of God’s peace that surpasses all understanding amongst many chaotic situations of life. You can have it too, if you choose the pathway that leads to Jesus

With that comes the blessed assurance of Hope, in the midst of despair and chaos

2 Corinthians 4:8-12 Amplified Bible (AMP)

8 We are pressured in every way [hedged in], but not crushed; perplexed [unsure of finding a way out], but not driven to despair; hunted down and persecuted, but not deserted [to stand alone]; struck down, but never destroyed; 10 always carrying around in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the [resurrection] life of Jesus also may be shown in our body. 11 For we who live are constantly [experiencing the threat of] being handed over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the [resurrection] life of Jesus also may be evidenced in our mortal body [which is subject to death]. 12 So physical death is [actively] at work in us, but [spiritual] life [is actively at work] in you.

Dear Jesus ,

As I embark on my journey, make yourself known to me. Help me to grasp an understanding of who You really are. As I reflect on your love and ways, lead me to the pathway of life

In Jesus Name

Amen

Stay Blessed

Keep Moving ON to Keep Going ON

hiking

I absolutely love my Sunday afternoon naps, for I know after a ‘refreshing’ nap, comes my ‘ever challenging mission’ of cleaning my home for the week ahead.

Becoming a mother has so far been one of the most rewarding and joyous experience in my life. In saying so, in order for me to keep my ‘joy’, I need to constantly and continually work on it. Parents of young toddlers can totally relate to what I am saying ‘Toddlers and Cleaning don’t go together, they JUST don’t ‘

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