Just my heart

A few days ago, while I was doing some shopping, I happened to listen to a line in a song that was on the radio. The guy was singing something along the lines, “I’m in love with what you can give me”.  The world and all its associates are just interested in what they can take from us, as the Bible calls them, they are “ravenous beasts” (Psalm.57:4)

Our mindset sometimes follows that worldly pattern where we think that Christ is after what we can offer, so we run around making all sorts of sin, burnt, peace and praise offerings. We think that we have to do something to please Him. 

“All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away.” – Isaiah.64:6

“But Samuel replied: “Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.” – 1 Samuel.15:22

Here’s God saying, “I’m not interested in all the stuff you do, I just want your heart, your devotion…” and us thinking there’s got to be more than that… 

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord replied, “you are worried and upset about many things. But only one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, and it will not be taken away from her.” – Luke.10:42

Mary chose to sit at the foot of Jesus, while Martha run around trying to juggle many things. 

He simply just wants our heart, then everything else will fall in to place. 

This song by Casting Crowns summarises it well…

Christmas – the shadow of Easter

95_3380Happy holidays everyone! 

It’s that time of year that gives everyone that buzz of joy and jubilant celebration. Yes – CHRISTmas! The lights, the exchange of cards and gifts, it just brings the goodness out of people. 

I have been thinking about the kind of activities and symbols that Christmas is associated with these days. Of course it has become so commercialised that it’s the time when the most amount of money is spent and the time when families are reunited. It’s also become about the Christmas tree, Mr Santa Claus and having some expensive gifts. More lavish and more indulgent. 

But what about the real meaning of Christmas? The light of the world entering the darkness of our world to give us the joy that we enjoy at Christmas time.

Funnily enough, the current symbols of Christmas have a lot of similarity to the Gospel message as revealed in Easter time. The Christmas tree that we glorify with various decorations is but a shadow of the tree which was beautified by our Saviour’s precious blood. The old man that children love (though they never met him) because each year he brings them presents, is incomparable to the gift of salvation we received by our Lord and though we don’t see Him we love Him so. The gifts placed under the Christmas tree… well you will have to wake up early on Christmas morning and kneel under the tree to open your present. You have your own unique one and only you are allowed to open it. So it is with the Gospel, mercy and grace are found when we humble ourselves at the foot of the cross and only we can open (accept) that present – Jesus into our hearts. 

In this beautiful season, let us invite into our hearts the servant King born in a manger to give us hope and light. 

Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones. 

The Star of Bethlehem

Greater treasures

When God asks us to give Him the gold we hold so tightly in our hands, our immediate response is often regret; as freed hands are not used to such liberty, we stretch them out trying to grab what may come in our path. Thus, that sweet surrender turns us to an even deeper bondage.

The reflex mechanism of the human mind immediately followed by letting go is quite interesting. We have to have something! How can God ask that of us? But His promise was never to leave us with empty, bare hands. As we open our clenched fists and give whatever we held so tightly, it is so that He can give us greater treasures, more precious than what we held so dear. Open hands can hold more than clenched fists.

May God help us to trust Him more and more as we face at our insecurities and questions each day. Amen!

The Golgotha battle

Perhaps you heard of great battles that had been won, but do you know the greatest battle ever won?

2000 years ago, it occurred upon Golgotha’s hill where heaven and hell, justice and mercy, sin and forgiveness met. In that battle, the Saviour took our pain and punishment of death and nailed them to the cross making a public display of His triumphant sacrifice and love that embraced even the worst of sinners.

There on the cross, our certificate of sentence to death was cancelled, erased because it was paid by the precious blood of the innocent Lamb, because of His immeasurable love.

How do I know who won the battle, for it seemed that for a moment He had lost when He said, “it is finished!” and breathed what seemed His last? Because upon the third day, He concurred the grave, He broke the chains of hell and death and now reigns victorious – forever.

“having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him. Colossians 2:14-15

The 21st Century Book of Acts

If there was a book to be written 

Of the plight, pain and persecution 

That my brothers and sisters are facing

Who has the gut to read from start to end

Who would reward them the crown of a saint?

 

They seem so ordinary or even less

Despised by all declared as fools

Why pay such a high price

Why waste your only life?

 

Tortured, beaten and crushed

Orphaned, despised and chained

With years of hard labour and ultimately death

 

It may be hard to imagine

From the comfort of our homes

But we are one body of Christ

Joint and knit together, we have a bond

 

If all their stories were to be told

And all their plight in detail

The fearful dark nights

The tears of losing loved ones

And the unity and love the Spirit provides

Would you read that book??

“There was once a fiddler who played so beautifully that everybody danced. A deaf man who could not hear the music considered them all insane. Those who are with Jesus in suffering hear this music to which other men are deaf. They dance and do not care if they are considered insane.” – Richard Wurmbrand, Victorious Faith 

NB- Richard Wurmbrand suffered severe persecution under the communist regime and once released started organisations to help Christians facing persecution around the world. 

For more information, visit: www.releaseinternational.org 

Called into Royalty

I had been thinking about the story of Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge and how she came into royalty. 

Although she is not of royal decent, because she was loved by Prince William, she became worthy to join the royal family. Now she has a special place in Prince William’s heart, because she is his wife. To him, who many people long to even get a glimpse of, she gained the privilege to spend all her life time with. 

Why? Did she earn her way to make him love her? Did she ask others to speak to him on her behalf? No it was as simple as, love. Love broke the barriers between the lay woman and royalty. 

And now that she belongs to him, she can speak to him all her concerns and feelings with out fear. It would be very strange if she started to ask him for something she needed using the queen or any of the royal officials. 

And in our Christian walk, it is exactly the same thing. Many so called Christians forget that they have this wonderful relationship with Christ and spend their lifetime seeking Him and asking for mercy via saints and angels. Yet the Bible says that “the angels long to look into these things” (1Peter.1:12). We have a wonderful privilege that we try and reject with “humility” that we are not worthy to come before this great King, but that is grace (Hebrew.4:14-16).

My Light

Even when the steps ahead are blurred

The road is dark and my torch flickering

Light of the world, I know You will lead

 

Even when the enemy whisper in my ears

And deafen me with condemnations

You are not worth the cost of His blood

You are not worth the price

For this very reason, I know Christ died

 

Even when my heart is confused

Trying to find a breakthrough

By attempting to figure out

The meaning of this life

And what I’m supposed to be

Here I am to live for His glory

 

Even when questions linger on my mind

When the answers seem mysteries to find

I know one thing today

Though He died for my sins

That old, wretched, blood stained cross

Is the reason of my existence

 

Even when my identity is just on a card

And my sense of belonging has been gone far

Feeling so out of place in this foreign land

Now I found a place to hide

A sanctuary for my soul to abide 

 

Now He lives, the King of Kings

Seated on the throne

To lead His children home

I don’t deserve it at all

But to His free gift of grace to say no?

Is foolishness, as though I can please Him on my own

 

Jesus will lead the way, oh yes He will

To those who trust Him

No matter how deaf or blind

No matter how slow or fast the steps

Willingness of a broken heart is all He asks. 

 

 

Be Thou my vision

living water

we search for wells to satisfy us

only to find ourselves thirst again

run to the shower in our bathtub

when we can be cleansed in His rain

look for peace in the tiny streams the world offers

when His everlasting water fall is sufficient to heal our pain

 

should the people of God run away

from the very name that signifies their sonship? – CHRISTian

do we not often neglect why we are here?

when Him turns to me and His to mine

when we decide to take charge of our minds

forgetting that i was crucified with Christ 

and this life i now live is no longer mine

 

let us hold fast to His grace so we can shine

like the sun in the day and the stars at night

that our cups may overflow and flood all around

let the cross never depart from before our eyes

that the world may see we are the temple of the Holy One!

 

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” – Galatians.2:20

 

God’s perfection, our imperfection

1. Looking to God who is perfect 

At times its easy to sing and ask God to open our eyes that we may see Him in all His majesty and glory and holiness. Well as I asked God this, I realised how great His majesty, how magnificent His glory and how pure His holiness is. 

 

2. Looking at myself who is completely imperfect and far from it

 I saw a filthy, unworthy person standing before the King of kings. I felt that I don’t belong there, I can never be His child or Him to be my Father, for ‘the chasm is far too wide’.  My imperfection seemed far too much and far too wide to allow me reach the other side. 

 

3. Looking to Jesus my righteousness! 

He took all my imperfection, all my wrongs, all my weaknesses and short comings, nailed it to the cross. As He rose in glory He also clothed me with His perfect righteousness and presented me clean before the Father, that He may ‘look on Jesus and pardon me’. 

 

All three have taught me some great lessons. Looking at GOD for who He is and not who I think He is. This helped me to recognise where I stand in comparison to His majesty and recognising my need for a Saviour. Thank You Jesus for being the way! 

‘Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”‘ – John.14:6