Monthly Archives: January 2016
For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and do not return there, but water the earth… – Isaiah 55:10
Many years back, when I started to lead the worship in our church, I had few problems. One of the problems is that by the grace of our Lord, I had spent few meditations on the glory and grandeur of our Lord. How awesome the LORD we worship is! This would be the main theme. Yet, people would not respond at all. It bothered me so much. How could people not respond to how great and awesome our Lord is? So whenever I led the worship, I would close my eyes shut so that I don’t have to see their unresponsive faces and get upset.
One day when I was leading such a worship, I was actually turning bitter with why these people are not able to understand the greatness of the Lord they are worshipping. And then the LORD spoke to me. “Patrick, open your eyes and see their faces.” I opened my eyes and saw faces that were haggard and tired, eyes that were sad. The LORD told me how His Son Jesus Christ had compassion on seeing the multitude and made me realize that our LORD is also a loving God Who has compassion for His sheep.
The church is mostly filled with daily wagers. Women who have drunkards and good-for-nothings as their husbands. Most of them had to work everyday from morning to evening every day of the week. Most of them suffered from domestic violence. Children who had not received a loving word from their parents. The Lord told me, “Patrick! It is good that even in your trials, you are trying to understand how great and awesome I am. But you have tasted and seen that the LORD is good. But not these people.These people have not tasted and seen that the Lord is good. Tell them that I Am a good God. That I have compassion for them. That I sent My Son for them. Give them comfort.”
To be honest, I was dumbfounded. Every believer has so many different problems. How can I comfort all of them? Then the LORD showed me the way. Speak the Word of God. Tell them the words that I give you.
And ever since, I have been speaking the Word of God and His goodness. And surprisingly, over the years, our believers have tasted and seen that the LORD they worship is a good God. And now, they are realizing that the LORD is also an awesome and great God.
Yes, when the Word of the LORD comes, it does water the earth. A dry and parched land receives solace when the Word of the LORD comes. Praise the Lord.
For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and do not return there, but water the earth, and make it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. – Isaiah 55:10-11 (NKJV)
As the rain comes down… the Hebrew word used for rain here denotes a violent rain, something like a deluge. Here the Lord is not talking about a soft misty rain that we enjoy, but a severe rain fall. We know that when such a rain fall comes, two things happen.
- So much water goes waste and
- Whatever crop has grown already, it will be destroyed.
So generally severe rain causes much loss to us.
Probably your life looks like that at present. There are so many promises that the Lord has given to you and it sort of looked like a deluge. Whenever you prayed, the Lord comforted you with choice words. As you read the Bible, beautiful verses gave you so much consolation. Then the Lord confirmed His promises to you through His servants. You felt so happy.
But now, it looks like most of those promises have gone into the ocean as the rain water does. You see that there is no more chance for some or most of the promises to be fulfilled. And because you believed in those promises, you lost few things that you could have gained.
My dear friend, I have been there. And I can tell you only one thing. His Word never fails. Never. It may look like all those promises have gone waste. That those promises have caused you more loss. But the Word of the LORD never goes back to Him void. It will accomplish the purpose for which He sent it. And it pleases the LORD to bless you. (Numbers 24:1) Hold on to your faith, for His Word will prosper in due time.
8 years back. There was an article in the news paper about how wearing a helmet while riding a motorbike can save a life. My wife was talking to me and said that as soon as we get some money, we should buy a good helmet for me. My mother-in-law was reading her Bible and she turned the pages, she saw some money she had kept it there. And in her heart, the Lord moved her to give that money to us to buy a helmet. We bought one.
On January 22nd, 2008, exactly 8 years back, I had to go to a nearby town in my bike along with another believer. As we were coming back, the believer who was sitting behind had some problems with his eyes as they were tearing up. So I offered him the helmet and he was about to take the helmet from me. Suddenly he changed his mind, wore a handkerchief around his face and told me to wear the helmet as I was the one who was riding the bike.
Just less than two minutes later, we met with a terrible accident. The one who was riding with me had no idea about the accident as he had his face covered and was thrown in the air. Fortunately he fell safely and had just a scrape.
But for me, it was the worst accident I have had and if not for the providence of God, today, January 22nd, would have been my 8th memorial day. I still remember vividly my face hitting the road with so much force, while I was thinking, “This is it”. If not for the helmet (which was damaged heavily), my face would have been nothing but pulp. I still carry the scar on my left hand. It looks as if part of my forearm was burned. The right palm still has depression because I lost so much flesh when I used it to balance the fall.
More importantly, the farmers who heard the sound of the accident and came rushing were surprised because my legs had no major wounds. They were sure that I would have lost a leg or at least one of the legs would be broken as both legs were stuck below the bike while it skidded for few meters. But by God’s grace, nothing happened except some minor cuts.
One thing I know is that the Lord in His providence, saved my life. Why? I would never know. But when I turn back to those 8 years, it saddens me yet again, to see how much I had failed Him. How many sins. How many times I had wavered due to unbelief.
However, I know this. If the Lord has saved me 8 years back, He saved me for a purpose. And He will fulfil His purpose in me.
So, with all the failures of these 8 years, on this day, I come to my Jesus one more time, seeking His forgiveness and giving thanks to Him for providing me another day, another year. For the forgiveness of my sins. For not losing hope in me. For giving me humility to understand my failings. For giving me grace and showing me so much mercy. I thank You, LORD.
Dear Father in Heaven, thank You for saving my life. Thank You for Your providence and for forgiving my sins through Your Son and my Saviour Jesus Christ. To You, I surrender all. May Your will be done in my life. In Jesus’s Name, Amen.
Recently, I attended a church. The worship leader based the worship on 2 Corinthians 1:20 and said how the Lord will surely fulfil His promises for us and the only qualification we need to take hold of His promises is that we have no qualifications to receive those promises, that we are nothing but clay in the hands of the Heavenly Potter.
For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us. – 2 Cor. 1:20
Then the pastor came for his message. And he tore down everything the worship leader had just said. He told that a positive attitude and confessions of God’s promises will not help you in anyway. You have to change. There has to be soul searching and you have to have certain qualities and qualifications and all that. Except he used a very strong language to say all these things.
I really feel bad for that congregation, for this is a common thing there. The worship leader says something and the pastor then tears down everything that was said. But in this case, I know that the worship leader was right in what he said. While what the pastor said is also correct, he missed a small thing in what the worship leader said.
The pastor was talking about the promises from the Bible. Some believers believe that they can take any verse from the Bible and by saying it again and again, they can take hold of that promise. This is the positive attitude based faith. But there is a small problem with this.
Say, I keep saying that the LORD is my Shepherd, but I remain a pig in my character. Will the Lord be my Shepherd? I doubt that. I have to be a sheep to take hold of that promise.
But what if the LORD told me that HE would be my Shepherd while I am a pig in my character? It means that He will break me into pieces and form me as a sheep, provided I abandon myself completely to His will and surrender as nothing but clay in His hands.
Dear friend, have you surrendered yourself in God’s hands, ready to be broken, moulded in whatever way He deems fit? Then He shall surely fulfil what He has promised you. For He declares: So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. – Isaiah 55:11.
When we feel like we are in the wilderness, with all our hopes lost and nothing left to put our trust in, the most dreaded of all fears come across our hearts – we are alone in this. There is no one who can understand what we are going through. It won’t even make sense to them. Suddenly we realize that we have no friend to confide in.
Alone. The fear of being lonely. Especially when we have followed the guidance of the Lord. We have only obeyed His instructions. Yet, here we are. We have nothing left. It is a wilderness all around us. Nothing to trust in. No hopes left. Your faith is struggling. And it sure looks lonely.
But dear friend, you are not alone. Because if you have followed the Lord, if you have obeyed His Word and you find yourself in a wilderness, remember that the Spirit of the Lord is with you.
Remember when Jesus found Himself in a wilderness, where He was tempted for 40 days and nights (Luke 4:2)? Where the devil questioned Jesus if He is the Son of God? And how did Jesus Christ reach that point of temptation? The Bible says that Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit and was led by the Spirit of God into the wilderness. (Luke 4:1)
Yes, dear friend, when you are in the midst of the wilderness, when it looks like there is no hope left, when suddenly you realize that you are all alone, remember that the Spirit of God has led you up to this point and He is with you. The Comforter is with you.And HE will give you rest. (Isaiah 63:14)
When we lose hope in the promises of God, when our faith struggles, when situations roar against the promises of God, we tend to think that the Lord has forgotten His promises. But the LORD never forgets a Word that He spoke. For He does not speak like we do. His every Word has the power to create a new universe. So, He would never say a Word unless He means it.
So, the problem is not with God. Then with who? The devil and his minions? Of course, not. They also don’t forget the promises of God. If God has made a promise to you, they know that God will fulfil that promise to you. They know that the Word of God is a hard currency. It is like a gold bar.
When Jesus was tempted by the devil, he kept asking Jesus, “If You are the Son of God…”, as if he is not sure of that fact. But we see that when Jesus was doing His ministry, the evil spirit confesses that Jesus Christ is the Son of the Most High God. (Mark 5:7)
Yes, they know. That is why they are trying so hard that you forget the promise or you lose your faith on those promises. Let us hold on to the promises of God. The due time is nearer than we think. Those promises will be surely fulfilled. Amen.
Whenever the Lord God gives us a promise, we see that the devil is more at work than we are. The circumstances will lead us to think against the promise of God. We will hear a whisper, saying, “But didn’t God promise the exact opposite of what is happening to me?” Our faith will struggle.
The good news is Jesus knows. Yes, He knows our struggles of faith.
In Luke 3:22, we see the Father declaring His love for Jesus Christ. A voice from heaven declared, “You are My beloved Son; in You, I am well pleased.” This is the assurance the Father gives to His Son, as Jesus was about to start His ministry.
Now look at what happened some 40 days later. Jesus fasted for 40 days and we always assume that Jesus was praying for 40 days. But the Gospel according to Luke says that He was tempted for forty days by the devil (Luke 4:2). After 40 days, Jesus Christ was exhausted and now the final temptations come. And the very first words the devil says is: “If You are the Son of God…”
When we are exhausted, the final temptations come. Questions will arise on the very Foundation on which we believed. And when our faith struggles, everyone, including our own self will accuse us for not trusting our Lord completely.
But we have a High Priest, Who was tempted in all possible ways; a High Priest, Who knows our weaknesses. Since Jesus was tempted just like us, He knows the ordeal. Of course, He never sinned. But He knows that we are made of dust. And HE is interceding for us, at this very moment, so that our faith remains strong and we hold on to His promises. Yes, the cunning one will be defeated yet again, and this time by us. May our LORD alone be glorified. Amen.
This is something I have wanted to post for a while. Then I came across this blog and I could not have said it as well as this says. So, here it is.
My soul clings to the dust; give me life according to Your Word. – Psalm 119:25 (MKJV)
The New Year celebrations are over. Life is back to normal and suddenly, my soul is worried. It looks back to the failures of the past. The unfulfilled desires of last year. And though my soul belongs to the Lord, it clings to the dust, along with my flesh.
I know that my soul does not belong to the dust. My flesh may fail me, for it is made up of dust. But my soul, it came from the Eternal God. But weighed down by the past, and worried about the future, my soul clings to the dust.
And, Lord, I tried hard to encourage my soul. But now I realize, it is You who breathed life in to the first soul, Adam. And it is You who has to breathe Your life into me. Give me life according to Your Word, Lord. Through Jesus, I pray. Amen.