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If you see a Christian brother or sister sinning then pray about their repentance

If you see a Christian brother or sister sinning in a way that does not lead to death, you should pray, and God will give that person life. But there is a sin that leads to death, and I am not saying you should pray for those who commit it. (1 John 5:16)

If you notice that a Christian brother or sister is in sin then pray for their repentance. Perhaps they indeed repent and come again to live for the Lord God. However not every time this is recommended because there are sins which lead to death. For instance, if you hear of a Christian committing suicide and dying, your prayers for his or her repentance won’t work since that person is sinned unto death. Do not despair if you hear of such sins such as suicide, selling soul’s to the Devil or even receiving the mark of the Beast. Rather give thanks to the Lord God that you are saved in Jesus Christ and that there are others in Christ who are still resisting sin!

Good old repentance

repentance

Matthew 4:17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.”

The very first words of Jesus when he began his ministry was that the people repent. No blame shifting, no excuses, no blaming your genetics. It was simple, repent. Period.

Jesus came for sinners alright. He didn’t have to come for the righteous. The righteous were always taken care of by God. He came to help sinners out of their sinful ways. For sin kills, sometimes physically but always spiritually. A person may never get caught for stealing but will suffer eternal damnation in hell for that.

Acts 3:18-19 But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Christ would suffer.  Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord

Turning away from sin is a big relief. Staying in sin is unbelief. You can’t can call yourself a true believer if you can’t turn away from sin. For that is the first command of Jesus when he began his ministry.

Romans 2:5 But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.

Many people are now very stubborn. They think that they can commit all the adultery and thievery they want in secret, then go to church, feed the poor and all will be well. I have words for them; repent and do not delay. For when the time of judgement comes, it will be anything but well for them.

We all need this repentance which is good old repentance. Not some cheesy repentance. No blaming your past for your sinful present. Just leave your sinful ways and ask God for pardon.

There might be some sins that you know you won’t be doing it. That’s not the point. You need to confess your sin to God. No hiding it from HIM. He knows it but expects humility from you.

Hebrews 3: 7-19

So, as the Holy Spirit says:  “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts  as you did in the rebellion,  during the time of testing in the wilderness,  where your ancestors tested and tried me,  though for forty years they saw what I did.  That is why I was angry with that generation;  I said, ‘Their hearts are always going astray,  and they have not known my ways.’ So I declared on oath in my anger,  ‘They shall never enter my rest.’ ” See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end. As has just been said:  “Today, if you hear his voice,  do not harden your hearts  as you did in the rebellion.” Who were they who heard and rebelled? Were they not all those Moses led out of Egypt? And with whom was he angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies perished in the wilderness? And to whom did God swear that they would never enter his rest if not to those who disobeyed? So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.

Unbelief is firstly a heart and mind issue. Actions only follow later. You know that God wanted to convict his people of their lack of faith after coming out from Egypt across the Red Sea. For he know that if they harbor unbelief it would eventually lead to sin which when coupled with non repentance proves to be a very bad combination for the human soul, always!

A Red Letter Church vs a Grace Based Church

What is the Difference between a Red Letter Church and a Grace based Church?

The Christian Church has Jesus as the Foundation. It is built upon the Red Letters of the Bible, the words that Jesus Christ Spoke Himself.  Build upon that, are the many pillars of Scripture, revealed through Prophet’s, Apostles, Kings, Priests, ETC
The Pillar of GRACE
The Pillar of RIGHTEOUSNESS
The Pillar of JUDGMENT

Altogether these pillars build up the teachings of the Church.

But in many Churches, a problem arises when, the Red letters of Jesus are removed as the foundation of the Church & the Pillar of Grace, is set as the new foundation.

With GRACE being the new foundation of the Church, Some pillars fit nicely on that.
Love & Mercy
Forgiveness & Blessing
Peace & Joy

But other pillars don’t fit so nicely on this Foundation. Therefore those subjects need to be de-emphasized, and rarely brought up.

While other pillars of Scripture don’t fit at all on this foundation.
Judgment
The Fear of God
Hell

Those subjects need to be ignored, disregarded or just briefly mentioned. Those subjects were from the God of long ago, who no longer exists. (Edit: This part as per hyper grace teachings is basically saying the Lord has changed his behaviour in the New Testament times, but reality is that the Bible never says the Lord God has become permissive of sin because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ)

The Sermon topics of the Grace based Church are VERY important topics, that need to be thoroughly covered. But as many people have discovered, it wasn’t that those topics were being covered, it was that other topics were just being ignored. The problem is that anytime you ignore parts of Scripture, it distorts the image of God.

The Grace based church presents the congregation with a Path of Salvation, and a Doorway to go through. The problem is that the path presented is Wider than the Narrow path depicted in scripture. This will result in a rude awakening for some people, who feel secure, yet are not on the RIGHT path.

Jesus taught that the House built on ROCK, does not fall. Therefore if we ignore parts of Scripture when building the Church, then the Church becomes less stable, because it’s missing part of the foundation.

Because Jesus is the Cornerstone of our Faith, His teachings demand greater focus over the teachings of any other. As Jesus even said, “My testimony is weightier than John’s

But in many churches we see that the Greater Focus is given to the Teachings of the Apostle Paul, over that of Jesus. Which Paul even warned us NOT to do.

In scripture we are told to behold the kindness and severity of God, and God is revealed as both a Lion and a Lamb.
But in the teachings of many Churches, we see this Principle is changed to. Behold the Kindness of God.
The LION is de-emphasized, and most sermons only reveal God as the Lamb. And this causes an imbalance in doctrine.

The SOLUTION:

Put back the Words of Jesus, as the Foundation of the Church. Where the teachings of the Apostle’s and Prophets are built upon the ROCK. Not ignoring any portions of scripture. This is the Church that Jesus Built.

– By Robert Brownell

 

will-of-god.jpg.jpeg

My note about teachings/letters of the Apostle Paul (call it a disclaimer if you wish):

Generally I wouldn’t put in a note at this point but I felt since the above quote somehow makes a distinguishing mark between the teachings of Jesus Christ and those of the Apostle Paul, so I felt it’s best to clarify this out for you.

To be clear enough; the letters of St. Paul in the Bible are fully part of the Holy Scriptures and are fully inspired by the Holy Spirit. However some people have tried to use that justify elimination of certain key doctrines of the Bible, in fact the very things that Jesus taught! The teachings or letters of St. Paul are not of his own but are of the Lord God who spoke through the Holy Spirit and inspired his letters.

Like I said the letters of St. Paul are inspired by the Holy Spirit, this means that they are to remind us of things which Jesus Christ taught during his ministry on earth and even more revelations of God without undermining the truth of the Gospel.

25 “These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. (John 14: 25-26)

13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. 14 He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. 15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.” (John 16:13-15)

Good works, Bad works and Grace

Your good works don’t earn you into Heaven, but your bad works CAN disqualify you, if not repented of. From Scripture we know that grace comes to those who repent, and God’s love comes to those who are surrendered to Him (the cross). Teaching people that Grace can come by other means than repentance is irresponsible, and it’s a dangerous doctrine to tell others that God’s love is not dependant on surrendering to Him. (quote by Robert Brownell)

 

Grace

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.  If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:5-10)

Effects and dangers of preaching an incomplete Gospel

Any person who preaches the Gospel  whether in church, home or elsewhere must take a serious note that they are to preach the complete Gospel.  One must never get bullied or pressured to only speak the points of the Gospel that the congregation likes to hear such as healing and salvation but avoid topics like martyrdom and sanctification. You are not here to impress the people, you are in fact here to preach the Gospel. And this means that you are not to compromise with the preaching of the Gospel at any given point of time and place.

Sometimes the preaching of an incomplete Gospel might have the actual words of the Bible and even sound impressive but that still leaves a lot of gray areas in the spirit. For instance, saying that Jesus picked up his cross for you but skipping up the part of the Gospel where Jesus wants us to carry our cross and deny oneself, leaves a person to have a lot of guess work as to whether to indulge in worldly luxuries or spend time helping the poor and needy.

Speaking about the Gospel where you focus a lot on love but miss out on mentioning that Jesus actually rose from the dead, is basically an incomplete Gospel.  As a result the person hearing such a Gospel will be surprised when someone actually mentions that Jesus had to die for us and then rose from the grave.

I had encountered one such person from another religion who claimed to know everything  about Christianity as he attended a lot of Christian worship services at a particular place. I felt that he was boasting too much, as a person who hears the complete Gospel won’t brag about his knowledge as the Gospel clearly speaks about being humble.  So I asked him, “I hope you know that Jesus died on the cross and rose again from the dead on the third day, do you?” And to this he replied that he doesn’t believe in the resurrection at all because this was something he heard from me for the first time and never heard it in the church he attended.  I told him to read the Bible and see what the Gospel actually says about the resurrection of Jesus Christ and he was still in shock. In hind sight, this incident made me realize that certain preachers are consistently NOT preaching the complete Gospel.

Now the following seven points are just a few of the effects and dangers of preaching an incomplete Gospel to the people:

1. People are not clear about who Jesus is

2. People are not sure if they are to leave their sins

3. People are not sure if they should pray for healings and miracles

4. People are not warned of persecutions and rejection they might encounter

5. People are not on guard against false prophets and false gospels

6. People are not encouraged to do good works

7. People are not sure of their salvation

A detailed explanation is given below for each of the above points so that you understand them better.

1) People are not clear about who Jesus is

It’s completely vain to preach a Gospel which doesn’t clearly identify Jesus as the Lord and as the Son of God. I wonder how do people even tolerate a preacher who doesn’t want to mention Jesus, not even one bit in church. If you don’t mention that Jesus is the Lamb of God how are they to understand his sacrificial death on the cross on our behalf?

Here are a few verses to consider:

  • The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. (Mark 1:1)
  • The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! (John 1:29)
  • Eight days later, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.”  Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.”  Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:26-28)

2) People are not sure if they are to leave their sins

I notice that certain preachers avoid any mention of repentance. They will say stuff like ‘You don’t need religion. You only need Jesus’ as if they really know what they are saying.  (On a side note, if you not sure whether if Christianity a religion or relation, then I’d say it’s both. To know about why I said that please refer to my earlier post Is Christianity a religion or relation?). The fact is that people have to both accept Jesus as their Savior and also repent of their sins.

Anyone who says that once you repent, each and every of your future sins are automatically forgiven can read my earlier post titled : ‘The heresy of pre-forgiven sin‘ which shows you must repent every time you sin.

Here are a few verses to reflect upon:

  • No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. (Luke 13:3)
  • Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. (Luke 15:7)
  • “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” (Matthew 3:2)

3) People are not sure if they should pray for healings and miracles

Some preachers try to focus a lot on good conduct but leave out the fact that miracles in the name of Jesus did happen in the Gospel and can still happen today. Miracles and healings are for today and have not gone by with the Apostles. They are still available for the glory of God. It’s vain to talk about miracles and healings as something that were only available at the time of Jesus but now it’s gone. (You can refer to my post titled Signs, wonders, miracles, deliverance and healing are for today, which explains it up).

Here are a few verses to ponder upon:

  • “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.  If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it. (John 14:12-14)
  • As they passed by in the morning, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots.  And Peter remembered and said to him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered.”  And Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God.  Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. (Matthew 11:20-24)

4) People are not warned of persecutions and rejection they might encounter

If all one is preaching is about the comforts of heaven and the joy of salvation but not warning the people about the persecutions and rejection they might encounter on account of believing in Jesus Christ, then they won’t be ready for it if it were to happen to them by any degree. This is not about scaring them but helping them be prepared to hold on to their hope in Christ even in the face of danger to life or ridicule by others. If Jesus could speak about that, why are you fearing to talk about the same thing?

Here are a few verses to think about:

  • and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.  When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next, for truly, I say to you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.  “A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master.  It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household. (Matthew 10:22-25)
  • “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matthew 5:11-12)

5) People are not on guard against false prophets and false gospels

If Gospel that is preached doesn’t warn against false prophets and the false gospels which emerge from these deceivers, then even though that Gospel is very clear on repentance it is still needs a lot of catching up to do. Because the people won’t have a clue and so be off their guard when false gospels, false prophets and even false Christ’s come to them and as a result believe in lies which can be damnable heresies.

Here are few verses to take heed of:

  • And then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. For false christ’s and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand. (Mark 13:21-23)
  • Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. (Matthew 7:15)
  • As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”  And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray.…. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray.  (Matthew 24: 3-5, 11)

6) People are not encouraged to do good works

Any preaching of Gospel that relies solely on mental assertions but doesn’t encourage to do good works is lacking the depth of love in action. Your good works are meant so that you glorify the Lord God. We are called to be both hearers and  doers of the Word of God.

Here are a few verses to put into action:

  • In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:16)
  • Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. (Matthew 6:1, NLT)
  • Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” (John 6:28-29)

7) People are not sure of their salvation

Preaching the Gospel in such a way that it overemphasizes on doing good works but does not speak in clear terms about salvation can end up confusing people. There might be a danger that people will incorrectly presume to their own hurt that their goods works will grant them salvation. So it’s important that the salvation is preached to them as per the Gospel instead of any man made doctrine.

Here are a few verses to believe in:

  • When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” 26 But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:25-26)
  • “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.  Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. (John 3:16-18)
  • The Father loves the Son and has given all things into his hand.  Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him. (John 3:35-36)
  • Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. (Mark 16:16)

A suggested prayer:

Dear Lord God, I come to you in the name of Jesus Christ your Son. Please forgive me if at any point of time in my life whether knowingly or unknowingly I did not preach the Gospel in all its fullness. Give me the courage and hope to preach the Gospel for your glory and without any fear. Bless my will power and memory so that I recall your greatness, mercy and victory in the Gospel and exhort those who hear it to believe in Jesus Christ. Be with me Holy Spirit that those who hear the Gospel from me and are in sin turn back to their One True Shepherd so that they love and serve him all the days of their life. Amen and amen.

Destroy the strongholds of sin and disobedience

expose falsehood

For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)

The word of God encourages us to love and obey God and also to reject sin. Every evil thought that comes against the Lord God must be removed out of your life. If your mind is not set to obey Christ, well then it’s on the way to disobey him.

The way of sin may seem nice with the ill gotten pleasures it appears to give. However, in the end it will bite like a poisonous snake. There are lots of lies spoken that the Bible is not God’s word, Jesus did not rise from the dead, there is no Devil etc. All of these come from the Evil One who beguiles his earthly minions to do his bidding on earth for free. A better way to describe these minions is them being slaves who are blind to the truth, who only live for their foolish lusts and desires and have made up their minds to be shut to the truth. Their lies are deceptive. They try to promote stupidity, rudeness, lack of respect and mindless chatter. The truth is the defense against their vile ways. The truth will set you free but first you got to know it. No wonder you must read the Holy Scriptures as often as you can.

Here a just a few applications of using the Word of God to cast down sinful strongholds:

A temptress may try to beguile a man into adultery but if he holds the commandment which says not to commit adultery, he will save himself a lot of trouble. He will realize that the way of the temptress may lead to dishonor and even divorce. So he will resist her sweet but poisonous words.

You shall not commit adultery. (Exodus 20:14)

Her house is the way to hell, going down to the chambers of death. (Proverbs 7:27) (this is describing a temptress)

The insanity of starving oneself ie anorexia just to look better can be avoided by a Christian woman if she holds closely to the fact that she is the temple of the Holy Spirit. She would do her research and find out that so many young girls have died to anorexia so much so that in certain countries they had to ban any propaganda or fashion promoting it. So she would keep away from trying to please the world by harming herself in the process.

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)

A child would not spend time into mindless hours of TV or social media knowing from scripture that we are to make the best use of the time. So he/she would balance out their studies, duties with any other fun activity. They would prepare well for the future instead of being dazed with celebrities who morals are as fickle as lightning.

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise,  making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.  (Ephesians 5:15-16)

The leader of a church would know not to steal money from the church at all because nothing in all creation is hidden from God. So a person who is called to preach the word of God would refrain from vain pursuit of money and focus on actual preaching.

The eyes of the LORD are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good. (Proverbs 15:3)

“Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture!” declares the LORD. (Jeremiah 23:1)

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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