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Ask your children what they hear in the Lord’s house

“We spare neither labors nor means in order to teach our children secular sciences, so that they can serve well the earthly authorities. Only the knowledge of the holy Faith, the service of the Heavenly King are a matter of indifference to us. We allow them to attend spectacles but we care little whether they go to Church and stand within it reverently. We demand an account from them of what they learned in their secular institutes—why do we not demand an account from them of what they heard in the Lord’s house?” (St. John Chrysostom)

Stop the Monday whining and complaining

no whiningBefore I get to the point, let’s give all praise and glory to our Lord Jesus Christ for every spiritual blessing that we have in him. Let’s thank God for sending Jesus for our salvation and freedom from sin and death. Now let’s ask the Holy Spirit to lead us in all truth and keep us free from all deception.

Nowadays its profoundly common to see a meme on various social media websites which basically shows someone, usually a baby, crying and the words on the picture say, “It’s Monday again!”. Good grief, what stupidity has this world come to? Instead of motivating each other to face life bravely, some weirdo comes up with a cry baby version of starting the working week and this stupidity goes viral! When was the last time wisdom went viral? Can’t recollect it, right? Because all this stupidity is made to look funny and in the name of fun people pass it on to others to get a vain laugh. The devil uses people’s dependence on foolish entertainment to make them more foolish. There are three truths one must hold on to when any such memes about Mondays come up.

Firstly, there is no need to be sad about Mondays. Many people never got up on Monday because they died on Sunday. Be happy that you are alive on Monday. Why are you even feeling sad? Some complain that one has to go back to work. Really, is that the best excuse? You are going to work because you in your free will chose to get that job. If you are not happy with that, please give that job to the many people, in fact thousands of people who are unemployed for months. Not just about work, we have the kids and youth who complain about going to school or college on Mondays. Maybe these people don’t appreciate the fact that many other youngsters in the world do NOT have access to education and put to slave labour in which they are not paid at all. Yes this actually happens in certain Third world nations. Why does one have to be stupidly unhappy about the fact that you can do so much good on a Monday? No one good reason to be sad about it.

Secondly, there is no need to encourage others to be sad about Mondays. You are called to give hope to others. Is this how a person of faith should make others feel bad instead of telling them how to go forward in life? Either one is faithless or is simply into the hands of the sinful world to say that Mondays are times be in despair just because you have to face life at work, school or college.

Thirdly, we must live a life with our hope in God instead of whining and complaining all the while. The one who hopes in God knows that one’s earthly existence is only temporary. There is a time to pass into eternity and live in heaven in the presence of God and his holy angels where one will lack no good thing and will always be happy. That is if one truly believes unto the Lord Jesus Christ for his or her salvation. Now one might wonder, what is to be done in one’s times on earth. I’d say don’t spend it complaining and whining. Spending your time exaggerating your problems is not going to help anyone. Instead of glorifying your problems, start using wisdom in tackling them. There are lots of principles in the Bible that you could put to use to face your challenges in life, instead of posting your worries on social media or messaging to earn sympathies from some and ridicule from the rest who don’t care. Pray often and give your worries to the Lord God who cares for you. Don’t handle it alone.

rejoice

cheerful

A few scripture verses along with some explaining that should help you help in this regard. Here we go:

A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. (Proverbs 17:22) (Being depressed is going to make you feel weak but if you are joyful you will be much relaxed.)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6) (You are encouraged to bring all your fears and anxieties in prayer to God.)

What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. (James 4:1-3) (Impure passions causes quarrels and fights with others. Prayers said with impure motives are not acceptable to God. So pray with pure motives instead.)

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10) (In Christ Jesus, you have a lot of good works to do. Be grateful to God for that and keep doing those good things.)

Do not restrict children from coming to Christ

child at peace

Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people, but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” And he laid his hands on them and went away. (Matthew 19:13-15)

Never ever be a legalistic person in trying to restrict children from coming to Christ. Because Jesus does not restrict himself to only the grown ups. He is there for the kids too. If a child wants to read the Bible or sing praises to God then you might as well encourage such things. There is nothing in the Bible that says to discourage kids from trying to learn about Jesus our Lord.

child trainedDeuteronomy 11:18-19 says this about teaching children the word of God; “You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

No wonder, when a child wants to know about Jesus Christ do not give excuses saying that they are not come of age.  Don’t delay their walk into the church services. Just think, how come the Evil One doesn’t bother about the age of children? He won’t hesitate to let children learn obscene language at school. He will try to make them focus too much on the TV instead of studies. So why make the Devil have a field day tempting children via the various deceptions of the world while you wait till the kids are grown up? Be a real soldier for Christ and cut off the plans of the Devil for your children. Teach your child about the Gospel. Teach them to be alert and prayerful. Most importantly teach them everything about Jesus Christ and his saving power.

I remember a preacher saying, ‘Christian youth are not the future, they are the present’. This couldn’t be more true. Why wait for Christian kids or youth to cross like 35-40 years to be zealous for God and so work for him? Instead you can always encourage them to do whatever little thing they can for the glory of God. Like singing in the choir, making Christian art work and poems, praying if they hear of someone in need etc. There’s always something good a child can do. All they need is the right direction and encouragement. This can happen best when they are aware of the grace and salvation that comes from the Lord Jesus Christ. Never let them be denied this.

Christ be with you!

 

Watch your words as they can shape your destiny

Watch your words for they become your destiny. Many people don’t realize how they shape their future by what they speak. For instance what you speak at an interview determines if you are selected for the job. By saying yes in your marriage service at church do you show your consent to marry and live with your beloved. People buy music not just for the sound of instruments but also for the words in the song lyrics.

Some people confess negative things for themselves and forget about it. Then after a few days tragedy strikes. I have dealt with such situations and found that there was a history of speaking in expectation of bad things to happen.

Remember that all the Israelites who murmured against God after he rescued them by taking them across the Red Sea. How they despised the goodness of the Lord though he provided for them in the wilderness. So as a result that generation of those who spoke against God’s plan of bringing them in the Promised Land never set foot into it. Their faithlessness and negativity led them into wandering for 40 years in the wilderness and living restless lives. It’s not days nor hours but forty long years. It was only the next generation of Israelites along with Joshua and Caleb who actually go to enter and inherit the Promised Land which is now called Israel.

While I also heard testimonies of those who were in grave danger but kept confessing that God will rescue them. As a result they survived when there was no chance to be saved.

The Holy Scripture mentions about a man who changed his life by his choice of words in prayer to God. He is called Jabez. Now, Jabez was named so because his mother gave birth to him in pain. By his confession of faith in God’s providence he obtained a wonderful heritage which was no longer marked with pain.

“Now Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, ‘Because I bore him in pain.’ And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, ‘Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain.’ So God granted him what he requested” (1 Chronicles 4:9-10).

So what you speak can affect your life for better or for worse. Its not just your prayer which must have faith in Christ’s goodness, it’s even your daily speaking too.

When you see and hear about terror say that the hand of God is able to save you. When people say why study the Bible when there’s so much sin around you say that you want to read it because you want to know more about the sinless Lamb of God. When others say that the jobs don’t come easily so why go to business school then say that God works out good things to those who trust him.

Just reflect on the following two verses:

1) There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health. (Proverbs 12:18)

2) Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. (Proverbs 18:21)

Some children act insecure because their parents keep calling them useless almost every day. As their hearts are very receptive the kids internalize such labels without discerning. By the time they are teenagers they develop low self esteem. Parents should avoid discouraging their kids with rash words.

There are kids who are great achievers only because their parents spoke good to them. It’s not necessary to flatter kids but speak kindly yet firmly to them.

Avoid bad language as it’s not fitting for prince of heaven nor a princess of heaven. God has given you enough salvation and intellect to make your point politely.

If a person speaks blasphemy against Jesus he is danger of hell fire. But if he asks mercy from God for insulting Jesus then he will be forgiven and he is back on the road to heaven.

If you have spoken with wrong confessions about your future and are facing the consequences would you be idle about it? I mean it’s idle to swallow the cow and choke at the tail. You may even say that you never spoke any harm to yourself but remember others who did speak unseemly things about your future but what can you do. You may wonder ‘can deadly words from anyone against me be reversed?’

My answer is that what is impossible to man is possible with God. Because with God all things are possible.

Maybe you said things such as ‘my race/ethnicity prevents me from getting promoted’. You have changed companies but you didn’t get a promotion. Finally you get into a company which has only people of your race or ethnicity. But still success evades you.

Here you need to take a stand. You can choose to keep saying what limited you or you can speak life into your situation. Say something like ‘I’m a capable child of God. Christ will make me the head and not the tail. I pray that every success that has been evading me come to me. I cancel the grip of every evil word spoken by me or someone else. In the name of Jesus. Amen’

Whatever you say let it be consistent with the goodness of the Lord Jesus. When speaking a positive word or just praying make sure it is consistent with the teaching of the Bible especially the Gospel. Because the word of God brings life for those who believe in it. Speak wisely therefore and enjoy the life and goodness which comes from Jesus Christ.

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