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Jesus Heals The Ten Lepers

On his way to Jerusalem in his ministry actually,
Jesus passed by the border between Samaria and Galilee.
There he met some lepers numbering ten,
In that village he healed them, amen!

They called Jesus from a distance afar,
Hoping to be healed of each leprous scar.
“Jesus, master, have pity on us!”
In their misery they called out to Him thus.

Upon Christ’s word to their priest they all went,
As they walked they got healed with no lament.
One of those cleansed did greatly rejoice,
And came back praising God in a loud voice.

He was the only one of the ten lepers who returned,
To give thanks to the Lord as Jesus had discerned.
The Lord Jesus questioned this Samaritan who became fine,
As to where were all the other nine?

For the Lord Jesus heals because he is faithful,
And expects those healed to be grateful.
Remember Jesus to the Leper did solemnly tell,
“Rise and go: your faith had made you well.”

 

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Bible reference : Gospel of St Luke 17:1-19

The True Joy Of Christmas

 

The true joy of Christmas is not about eating nice food. Nor is it about having family around yourself to celebrate. It’s neither wearing fine clothes nor hearing carols being sung around the corner. All of these are good in themselves, in moderation of course, but they do not make up the true joy of Christmas. Never even be part of the ignoble Black Friday sale before Christmas time, there is nothing Christlike in it. Because you can still have all of them but lose the joy in pursuit of worldly festivities, in trying to imitate the world’s ways and the world’s vain pleasures.

But heart of hearts, the true joy of Christmas is in being grateful for God’s gift to the world; the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We didn’t deserve him then nor do we deserve him now, because its only the grace of God even till now. And whatever Jesus asks of us we only do it in loving obedience to the will of God.

I appreciate each one taking time to meditate and celebrate the gift of the Savior Jesus to this fallen world we live in. And since we have received this most solemn faith by the Spirit of God, let’s continue to celebrate Jesus not just on Christmas but each day we live.

To sum it all up; you can only find the true of joy of Christmas in being grateful and obedient to Jesus Christ every time and everyday!

 

Let us give thanks to God continually

Let us give thanks to God continually. For, it is outrageous that when we enjoy His benefaction to us in deed every single day, we do not acknowledge the favor with so much as a word; and this, when the acknowledgment confers great benefit on us. He does not need anything of ours, but we stand in need of all things from Him.

In point of fact, thanksgiving adds nothing to Him, but it brings us closer to Him. For if, when we recall the benefactions of men, we are the more warmed by affection for them; much more, when we continually bring to mind the benefits of the Master towards us, shall we be more earnest with regard to His commandments.

For this cause Paul also said, Be ye thankful. For the best preservative of any benefaction is the remembrance of the benefaction, and a continual thanksgiving for it. (St. John Chrysostom)

God the life giver (Reflection)

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The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty has given me life. (Job 33:4)

‘See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand. (Deuteronomy 32:9)

God can take life away but he can also give life. In fact he’s the creator of all living creatures. At time’s doctor’s help with life but if you notice its only about extending life and delaying death. Even the best of physician’s cannot create a living being from mere dust or speaking words. Only God can do that!

God can perform resurrection from the dead and no one can stop him. The book of Revelation tells us that the two prophetic witnesses will be miraculously raised from the dead. People shall be so haughty and arrogant that they’d not even give their bodies for burial in dignity. (A pathetic bunch of fools are such people who have no respect for the martyrs of the Lord. May the Lord refute their profane logic!) Then God will make the two witnesses alive in the sight of their enemies. What a great spectacular event indeed!

For three and a half days some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations will gaze at their dead bodies and refuse to let them be placed in a tomb, and those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them and make merry and exchange presents, because these two prophets had been a torment to those who dwell on the earth. But after the three and a half days a breath of life from God entered them, and they stood up on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them.  Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here!” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies watched them. (Revelation 11:9-12)

The Lord has always been and will continue to be the giver of life. Nothing can outdo him, no one can compete with him. He is indeed the everlasting God.

For with you is the fountain of life; in your light do we see light. (Psalm 36:9)

“You are the Lord, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them; and the host of heaven worships you. (Nehemiah 9:6)

Some people who are depressed unfortunately don’t value their lives for a few seconds or minutes. And such a short span is used by them to commit suicide. How wicked are those people who deliberately cause other’s to consider suicide! May these people who do not value life so as to prompt suicide be exposed so that civil law takes it course! Pray about this for your local community especially.

By faith in the Gospel and resurrection of Jesus you have eternal life from God himself. So, your life in Christ Jesus is of great value. Not everyone regards it that well. Though at death bed people do get serious. Why delay such an important thing? Give God all the thanks you can. Take time to ponder about on the below verses from John 1:1-18 which shows your life in Christ:

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God.3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light.

9 The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. 15 (John bore witness about him, and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.’”) 16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.17 For the law was given through Moses;grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.

25 tips to prepare spiritually for Christmas

christmas

I know that it’s not yet December and still I feel inspired to share 25 tips to prepare spiritually for Christmas. A head start in preparation should be of good help for you.

Christmas is the celebration of the birth of Christ Jesus our Lord. Do remember that almost everyone has celebrated their own birthday at some time or the other. Many love to celebrate the birthday of their friend and loved ones. It’s a way to express their love for the gift of life their own have received. And here we have someone even more greater, the giver of life, Christ himself. How much more are we to value his birth and his coming to save us from sin and death?

Let’s read the following scriptures:

  • For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. (Isaiah 9:7)
  • She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins (Matthew 1:21)
  • And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. (Luke 2:8-11)

the crib

So now here are 25 tips to prepare spiritually for Christmas:

  1. Read the scriptures about Jesus, especially the reason why Jesus had to come as a man on earth. Read as much as you can. (A little head start, please read 1 Peter 1:20, Hebrews 9:26, Acts 2:23-25)
  2. Meditate on the scriptures pertaining to the birth of Christ. (Please read Isaiah 11:1, Isaiah 7:14, Jeremiah 23:5, Micah 5:2, Luke 1:39-45, John 1:9-14)
  3. Pray by yourself alone in God’s presence even more. (read Matthew 6:6 which says But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.)
  4. Don’t neglect to pray in groups as well, especially with your family (read Matthew 18:20 in which Jesus said; For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them)
  5. Learn to sing praises to the Lord. If you are good at singing already you might as well sing with your family and Christian friends. If not, then do try by yourself first.
  6. Eat well but in proportion. Do not overeat no matter how nice the pie looks like. This is not a time to gain weight but rather to seek God.
  7. Ask the Holy Spirit to lead you in God’s will. Try to realize what the Spirit wants you to do this Christmas.
  8. Repent of all sins that you are still stuck in. Our Holy God is best praised by a holy worshiper. So truly repent with your heart and ask for pardon and mercy from Christ.
  9. Feed the poor and needy, the widows and orphans in need. You may not be able to feed all of them in your city but surely you can feed at least one. Some churches around this season have a feed the poor program, so you might like to check out with them if they need some help from you.
  10. Tell others about Jesus Christ to non-Christians. Again, you may not be able to reach out to the whole area that you live but you can always speak a little bit here and there to your non-Christian friends who might be curious about the Christian faith. Why not invite them to a Church service that preaches Christ as the Savior of the world.
  11. Speak about Jesus Christ at home with your family. Even if all know Christ, it’s still good that you as a family reaffirm your faith and unity in Christ.
  12. Send out greeting cards (or emails for those in the fast lane) to all your friends and dear ones away from home. Let them know that Christ came into the world for them and cares for them.
  13. Reach to your family especially your parents or anyone whom you have not been in contact for a long time. Speak kindness and encouragement to them. If there are differences see to the best that you can to reconcile in good faith with them. (This point was not what I intended to write today but feel inspired to write anyway. Maybe it’s God’s message for some people who will be reading this)
  14. Write poems unto the Lord. I’m not talking about publishing them. Rather its about penning your good thoughts about Jesus back to him. It might be your first time but I’m sure the Lord will appreciate your heart into expressing your love to him in poems. (There is no compulsion to do this but do it as you feel inspired by the Holy Spirit to do so. Maybe the Lord wants you do some other art form)
  15. Refrain from worldly passions which distract you from the will of God. Do not get entangled in unseemly entertainment, hobbies etc.
  16. Manage your time. I mean schedule your leaves and work or study timings to spend quality time in prayer, Bible reading and praising God.
  17. Submit your plans to God. As the year is coming to a close and a new year will begin, think of all the things you want to do in the future. Don’t be a in a hurry nor anxious but do it with an open mind ready to accept the grace of God.
  18. Pray for the persecuted Christians. Not every land on earth is free from violent bigots. A lot of Christians suffer persecution and injustice just because of their faith in Christ. Pray that they come out of prison, pray for their dignity, pray for their peace and safety.
  19. Do not overspend. Christmas is not a time of splurging and getting into debt. So do not waste money on unnecessary expenses. Keep yourself out of the grasp of materialism. Jesus is going to look at your heart instead of how richly you spend, so don’t worry if you can’t afford a lavish Christmas.
  20. Be free of legalism. Jesus came to set you free. Do not get into the trap of anything falsely called tradition but only makes you go into a guilt trip to do things to earn the grace of God. If the grace of God can be earned, then it’s not grace at all.
  21. Rest in God. An often neglected teaching but one must find one’s true rest in Christ Jesus. It’s that you must believe unto God to give you rest. Take time to receive his rest.
  22. Don’t get too busy in the things that one does to generally prepare for Christmas such as the tree lights, decorations etc. These are just external ways to celebrate and can be a distraction from the true meaning of Christmas if you are too focused on it.
  23. Avoid undue fights in relationships. Whether its home or church do not waste your time getting into foolish arguments on petty issues like the choice of food and drinks, Christmas carols, clothes etc.
  24. Be safe. Though it may seem a physical tip it’s much related to your spirit as your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. Avoid any contaminated food or drink. Don’t try dangerous stunts just for a camera shot that you want to share with others. Hope you get the idea.
  25. Be thankful to God. Christmas is the time to thank God for sending Jesus Christ his Son on earth as a man to save us. So do express your gratitude to God.
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