Friday, September 20, 2013

Pass, not pass out!!!

The purpose of trials is to see you pass, not pass out!

James 1:2-4 NLT
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

Comparison Between Peter and Judas

Among the apostles, the one absolutely stunning success was Judas, and the one thoroughly groveling failure was Peter. Judas was a success in the ways that most impress us: he was successful both financially and politically. He cleverly arranged to control the money of the apostolic band; he skillfully manipulated the political forces of the day to accomplish his goal. And Peter was a failure in ways that we most dread: he was impotent in a crisis and socially inept. At the arrest of Jesus he collapsed, a hapless, blustering coward; in the most critical situations of his life with Jesus, the confession on the road to Caesarea Philippi and the vision on the Mount of transfiguration, he said the most embarrassingly inappropriate things. He was not the companion we would want with us in time of danger, and he was not the kind of person we would feel comfortable with at a social occasion.

Time, of course, has reversed our judgments on the two men. Judas is now a byword for betrayal, and Peter is one of the most honored names in the church and in the world. Judas is a villain; Peter is a saint. Yet the world continues to chase after the successes of Judas, financial wealth and political power, and to defend itself against the failures of Peter, impotence and ineptness. 

Eugene Petersen, in Little House on the Freeway, Tim Kimmel, pp. 191-192


Monday, September 16, 2013

Let us go over to the other side.

I was spending sometime pondering on Mark’s account pertaining to Jesus Calming the Storm (Mark 4:35-41). I have read the verses countless time and most of the time I will focus on the furious storm followed by Jesus commanding the waves to be still and then He turn to his disciples asking them why they are afraid and still have no faith.

This time around, the Holy Spirit led my attention to verse 35 where Jesus tells his disciples – “Let us go over to the other side.” I am reminded again about the importance of putting our trust and hope in the Word of God.  Jesus told His disciples, "Let's cross to the other side of the lake" (Mark 4:35). At that point, they knew it was His will to go to the other side, and Jesus expected them to believe what He said.

However, after they started their journey they soon found themselves in a fierce storm, and waves were breaking over the edge of the boat, filling it with water. The disciples were petrified over what was happening to them, and finally woke Jesus. Despite learning at the feet of Jesus (verse 34), the disciple demonstrated a faithless attitude. They questioned Jesus whether he cares about them – “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” The storm that causes the boat to rock has made the disciples focus on their present issue rather than recalling what Jesus said “Let us go over to the other side.” He did not say, "let us launch out, get caught in a storm and perish". Jesus told His Disciples exactly what was to come... He was going to take them to the other side, despite what they will face.

The crisis of life has often been compared to stormy seas. They come whether we like it or not. Sometimes they terrify us. They knock us around and threaten to destroy all our stability and security. They bring along fear and uncertainty.  We need to hold on to God's promises - "Let us go over to the other side". Do not let the storms of life blind us from the promises of God.  After all, HE's got the whole world in HIS hand.

Jesus will take us over to the other side!

Be Blessed.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Don’t judge a book by its cover

There is an old saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover”. The meaning is simple. A person’s appearance, either their physical attributes or demeanor, are no indication of their inner being. While their physical appearance may well be apparent, their spiritual (inner) dimension is not. As the Lord Jesus Christ states (Matthew 23:25-26), the outside of the cup may appear clean and whitewashed, however, inside reveals a completely different story.

Note to myself today:- Lord, search my inner man today. Teach me to walk in your precept everyday knowing that you look at the inner man and not at our outside appearance.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


The Internship is an interesting movie showing the determination of two guys who lost their sales job to compete in a totally new environment along with other computer geeks and eventually securing a job with Google. I guess the take away from the movie is perseverance.

Every day new challenges come along our way. Sometimes it is overwhelming but the key is perseverance. We persevere not with our own strength but through Christ who gives us strength. Apostle Paul says "For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength." To understand the context of this verse, it is essential to read the verses that precede it. In the first few verses of Philippians 4, Paul urged his readers to trust God, stand firm, and always rejoice, no matter what their circumstances may be. He then pointed out the hardships he had personally suffered. Immediately following those statements, he clarified that he was only able to endure such things because Christ empowered him to do so. Apostle Paul had experienced all the ups and downs of life and what he was saying was that through the strength of Christ he had come to a place where he was content in any circumstances.

It’s not easy to settle on, especially when the tough things in life are being thrown our way. The only way to get to that place of peace is to find the seat of our identity in God and there are number of practices we can encourage in our lives to open ourselves to the transforming work of God to move us in that direction.

Next time when life gives you lemons, chill out, make lemonade and know that Christ is your strength.  Whatever your situation is today, God knows about it. He sees you and hears the cry of your heart. And if you will give Him your challenges and do what He tells you to do, you will access His overcoming love, grace and power and be more than a conqueror.

Be Blessed.