Be Thankful

1st June

Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”

1 Thessalonians 5:18

There are so many things to be thankful for. Even in the bad times, it always could be worse right? Yet more than just our emotions or feelings, thankfulness is an attitude of looking past circumstances and seeing God’s hands at work in our life, around us and for His glory, and then praising Him for what He is doing. Thankfulness sees that God in control and doesn’t reason, with just our carnal feelings and thoughts. It sees God’s work in all things. Furthermore, it is God’s perfect will for our lives; for those who belong to Christ.

As we begin to be thankful to God in our prayer lives, we soon notice that the things to be thankful for, start becoming an endless list. Our worries decrease, our stress levels decrease and our trust, hope and optimism in what God is doing and going to do in our lives increases. It changes our perception of the God we serve and the power He has. It realigns our image of who we have made God to be, giving a clearer picture of who He really is. Thankfulness quashes all fear and anxiety and causes us to reflect on the faithfulness of God’s answered prayers, even down to the things we don’t even pray for or take for granted.

Rejoice, this morning, in thanksgiving. Rejoice God has given us a new day. All glory to Him. Amen.

Fight The Good Fight

31st May

Pursue righteousness and a Godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness. Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have declared so well before many witnesses.”

1 Timothy 6:11b-12

Compromise is one of the biggest things corrupting the Christian faith throughout the world. Compromise on true Biblical doctrine, on solid teachings from the Word of God and in people’s own life style choices. Yet this problem is not just limited to today’s church but was a constant theme in the time of writing this letter to Timothy. False teaching was prime, with many trying to attract more followers by watering down their message, some even to the point of preaching heresy.

Yet just at Timothy was encouraged to stand strong against such things, so are we also encouraged to keeping fighting the good fight for the true faith. Yes it costs. Yes we may not always be popular, as what the Bible teaches constantly goes against the grain of worldly living, but our role is to be God pleasers and not man pleasers. God has commissioned us all to hold true to His word, to not compromise on truth and to pursue righteousness. Stand strong and hold dear the true faith. Don’t compromise but rather be empowered by the Holy Spirit to pursue righteous living.

The Precious Blood Spilled For Us

30th May

For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or sliver, which lose their value. It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.”

1 Peter 1:18-19

Jesus’ blood, His sacrifice, and His ransom for us, never ever lose their value. It was forever. It wasn’t something that gets old. It wasn’t something that decays. It doesn’t become more precious or less precious with time. It was and is eternally, spectacularly, mind-blowingly, once and for all, the greatest gift ever to be given to man-kind. It can’t compare with silver and gold, it cannot be fully described with human words, and it is completely an undeserved gift.

When Adam and Eve sinned, we inherited an empty sinful nature. Yet when Jesus died and paid our sacrifice, He replaced our empty sinful nature with robes of glory. He changed our old sinful lifestyles with God-like living through the empowerment of His grace, with the precious blood of Christ and the refining work of the Holy Spirit. It is a message that should not be forgotten. Life without Christ is empty. Yet life with Christ is the very reason we were created. As we start a new week, let us remember that the precious blood of Christ, replaced and exchanged the emptiness of the lifestyles we received from our ancestors, with the unlimited grace, forgiveness and love of Christ.

The Power Of Grace : Re-visited

28th & 29th May

Weekend Edition

Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”

2 Corinthians 12:8-9

Today’s message is simple. There is no one else that can save us from our sin, apart from Jesus Christ. There is really nothing we can do that will lead us to salvation. Salvation is God’s work alone. There is no formula, no performance, no rituals you have to follow, because salvation is God’s free gift to us. The only way we are saved from living as God’s enemies is by accepting His gift, believing that Jesus is Lord and repenting of bad choices that lead us to live lifestyles in opposition to God! When we accept His gift to us we are adopted into His family and become sons and daughters of the most high God, no longer enemies or slaves to sin, but new creations. We become His family, His bride, and His friends.

It is God’s grace that saves us from our sins. It is His grace that paid the price that we cannot pay. It is His grace that leads us to Godly living. It is grace that empowers us to live a life free from sinful habits and grace that picks us up when we fall. It is God’s grace that turns our weakness into to opportunities for God to use us and be glorified. Yet the best news of all, as mentioned above, grace is completely free. It is not earned or bought. It is God imparting His love and acceptance over His beloved children. It’s grace that saves us and grace that keeps us.

A Mere Speck : Revisited

27th May

The Lord is KING. Let the earth rejoice! Let the farthest coastlands be glad….The mountains melt like wax before the Lord, before the Lord of all the earth.”

Psalm 97:1,5

It has been said that Mountain’s make up 70% of Japans land mass. Everywhere you travel to around the island, you probably are not far from a huge mountain range. These mountains and are not glorified hills but huge tall mountains, 2000 or 3000 meters tall. They bask in the sun’s glory in the summer and decorated with snow in the winter.

Yet in all of their glory, they are still nothing compared to the enormity of Almighty God. A human standing next to or even attempting to climb one of these mountains, has to pale into sheer humility at the size contrast. But compared to God, even these huge mountains are minute. Even if we could compare the earth to God’s greatness it would still be a “mere speck” in His eyes. Our planet is just one of millions of stars and planets in the thousands of solar systems in the known universe. David, in today’s Psalm, also comments on the greatness of God and how even these mighty mountains melt like wax before the Lord’s Majesty. The whole earth sings of God’s greatness.

Today, let us put our problems into perspective. The size of our problems to us might seem huge but to God they are not. God is far far greater than any of our problems. Seriously nothing is too big for Him. Nothing surprises Him, nothing scares Him and nothing makes Him worry. The best part is, is that God cares for you individually. He cares for us all individually. He knows every single hurt, pain, disappointment, financial need, and family need and HE CARES. Even if He is so much higher, bigger and greater, He still cares personally for each of us. God doesn’t look at our problems, even if they are small for Him and dismiss them. Rather He is there fighting with us, walking by our side and holding our hands through the darkest valleys, fighting to make a way out.

If you are waking up to a whole heap of problems this morning, put you life into the perspective of God’s eyes and know that He is with you. God, the creator of everything in the entire universe…

is on your side.

God’s Love Is Powerful: Revisited

26th May

Praise the Lord, all you nations. Praise Him, all you people of the earth. For His unfailing love for us is powerful; The Lord’s faithfulness endures forever. Praise the Lord!”

Psalm 117

There is no greater love than the love of Father God. In fact the Psalmist tells us that God’s love for us is POWERFUL. It is because of His powerful love that sin was defeated. It was His powerful love that resurrected Jesus from the grave. It is His powerful love that saves even the most hardened criminals. Because of His powerful love towards us we too can have an intimate relationship with our Heavenly Father. Even when we rebel against Him, His powerful love calls us back into His arms. He is faithful and just, always. His faithfulness endures forever.

It is because we are loved with such a powerful love, that we can praise Him, we can love Him, and we can love others with the same love He loves us with. His powerful love breaks the chains of addiction, fear and bondage. His powerful love is liberating. His powerful love is constantly repairing brokenness, restoring families, uniting relationships and bringing hope and justice to the world. Let us also unite in praise to the Lord, because of His Powerful love towards us and because of His faithfulness that endures forever

The Message Of Christ: A Fresh View

25th May

Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom He gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.”

Colossians 3:16

What is the message of Christ that Paul writes about here in the letter to the Colossian church? Well, Jesus’ own message about Himself. Jesus said of Himself that He ‘was the way, the truth and the life’. He said that ‘no-one could go to the Father except through Him’. He said that it was because God ‘so loved the world’, He was sent so that ‘everyone who believes in Him would not perish but have eternal life’. Jesus said that ‘there is no greater love than someone laying down their life for their friends’ and if we follow His commands then we ‘are His friends’. He encouraged His disciples that He was and is ‘the bread of life’, the sustainer and provider, for both our physical and spiritual needs. He is our place of refuge as He lovingly said, ‘come to Me all who are weary and heavy burdened and I will give you rest’. And there is so much more….

In Jesus we find hope, grace, love, acceptance and provision. This is the message of Christ. We are loved, accepted and forgiven. Each new day holds a new blessing, a new portion of grace, a new dose of His everlasting love for us and the best part, we can have as much of Jesus as our hearts can contain. There is something special about being around believers who have opened their hearts fully to Jesus and everything about them radiates His beauty. That is the type of believers Paul was encouraging the Colossian church to become and that is the type of believer we ought to be. May we teach, counsel and encourage each other, building each other up for His Kingdom and may the message about Christ fill our hearts and lives.

True Worship

24th May

And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father… willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.”

Colossians 3:17, 23

Often, worship is only thought of as something that is done on Sunday mornings, as a singing offering to God. Of course that is partly true, but worship is so much more than just singing songs on a Sunday morning. Worship is a lifestyle. It is a decision to include God in everything we are doing through deed, action and in all we say; we glorify God and give Him praise by living for Him.

We must remember that we are Christ’s ambassadors in all we do. We are His hands and His feet on this earth. We are His spokesmen to tell the world about Him. We are the light to direct people back to Jesus. These attributes are not bound by the four walls of church. We are all these things in everything we do, in every place and in every situation. If Christ is at the center of what we are doing, then that is true worship. And that is how God wants us to live.

As we go to work, school, university, or at home, in all we do, let us remember that we are living for Christ. May we include God in everything we do and allow Him to lead, guide and provide us with all the tools we need to do whatever we are doing for Him. Christ in everything we do and say.

But Now Is The Time….

23rd May

You used to do these things when your life was still part of this world. But now is the time to get rid of anger, rage, malicious behaviour, slander, and dirty language.”

Colossians 3:7-8

Friends now is the time to get your life right with Christ. It is time to stand in who you are in God’s eyes. It is time to reject the lies about who the devil says you are and start accepting the truth of who God says you are. We are longer slaves to this world. We have been set free to live in holiness, in truth, and in victory. We no longer have to stare life’s problems in the face with fear or defeat but from standing in victory. Let us identify the areas in our lives that we need to walk in victory over, recognise them, repent of them, rebuke them and replace the emptiness with God’s truth and what His word says about us.

Friends, we are called to be the “holy people He (God) loves..”(v12). We are chosen to be loved. We are chosen to be His children. We are set apart to be holy. We are forgiven by Jesus. It is a free gift of grace. We are loved. We are equipped and we have Jesus living in us and we are living in Him. That is our identity. That is our position in Him. That is who we are. Now is the time to walk in that truth.

The Colours Of Spring

21st & 22nd May

Weekend Edition

And why do you worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all of his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.”

Matthew 6:28

Spring is in full flow. The trees are adorned with green leaves, the flowers are blossoming, mornings are greeted with the sound of birds chirping and the earth is filled with new birth. It is a wonderful time of the year to celebrate God’s goodness and the joy of the beauty He has given us to enjoy. Moreover, it is a reminder of how much God cares and looks after us.

Jesus in the ‘sermon on the mount’ tackles the issue of worrying in the believers life by encouraging His listeners of the deeper truth behind the earth’s beauty. Jesus comments that ‘even Solomon in all of his wealth’ could not dress himself as beautifully as God dresses the fields with the lilies. In fact Solomon was the richest King ever to live in Israel. It was his accumulated wealth that helped fund the building of the temple, and his own magnificent palace. Jesus concluded that if God takes so much care in making the lilies of the fields so beautiful, how much more will He take care of us His children.

Today as you look around at God’s natural beauty, be reminded that God has His hand on your life. Be reminded that there is no need to worry. He is for you and wants to give you His every good gift. The situation you may be going through, may be tough and hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. But be encouraged for your ‘Heavenly Father already knows all your needs…’!!