Archive for April, 2009

Purity of Heart and Compassion

April 27, 2009

I was reading parts of the book called “The Relentless Tenderness of Jesus” by Brennan Manning and discovered some very interesting and fascinating insights I thought I would share with you.  This has been a great book to read since the author confronts Christians with many issues.   Another title of this book could be “The Things We Think But Do Not Say”.

In his book he shares his view about what “Purity of Heart” means to him.   He talks about the idea that it does not necessarily mean that a person is totally sinless since it is difficult for any Christian  to  attain this level of perfection here on earth.  Instead it is when we cry out to God in worship saying ” You alone are the Holy One,  you alone are the Lord.”  It does not come by our own Herculean efforts and threadbare resolutions.  It is through constant worship of the Lord  in our lives that helps us produce this purity of heart.  When we worship God, we choose to see only the compassion, the infinite patience and tender love of Christ and realise that Jesus is Lord.  We realise this is all that we need.  When we are mesmerized by his presence then our own guilt and reproach disappear into nothingness. We are no longer aware of ourselves.  Instead in worshipping God it takes our eyes off ourselves and focuses them on the wonder and holiness of God.  Through worship even the desire for holiness can be transformed into a pure and simple desire for Jesus himself.     In this way Purity of Heart can be seen as taking our eyes off ourselves and our own faults and instead focusing them more on Jesus.  When we have a simple desire for Jesus and have him always in our focus,  then God can gradually cleanse us in His way and time even while we are not looking .

Hope this doesn’t sound too “airy fairy”.  However it did help me to see another perspective to what “purity of heart” means and helped me to make a more conscious effort to enter into worship during our worship times.

The author also talks about the importance of compassion and how this is one of the true characteristics of a Christian.  He goes on to say that it can take a lot of spiritual maturity to have compassion and that it is opposite of competition which he finds so present in the Christian world.

Daily Encouragement

April 27, 2009

Our church community “The Servants of Jesus”  recently had a message about the importance of encouraging each other in the body of Christ.  You can also receive daily encouragement from the Bible as well.  I find the “Our Daily Bread” booklets very helpful in maintaining a consistent reading plan.  It also helps to bring out the important points of the bible passage that you read each day. 

Sometimes we may face situations where there is no one to encourage us at one point in time.  This is where God’s word is always there to help us.

Here is a link where you can order a copy of this quarterly booklet at no charge :-  http://www.rbc.org/odb/odb.shtml

Mobile Phones – 5 Useful Facts

April 25, 2009

There are a few things that can be done in times of grave emergencies.
Your mobile phone can actually be a life saver or an emergency tool for survival. Check out the things that you can do with it:

FIRST
Emergency
The Emergency Number worldwide for Mobile is 112.

If you find yourself out of the coverage area of your mobile; network and there is an emergency, dial 112 and the mobile will search any existing network to establish the emergency number for you, and interestingly this number 112 can be dialed even if the keypad is locked. Try it out.

SECOND
Have you locked your keys in the car?
Does your car have remote keyless entry? This may come in handy someday. Good reason to own a cell phone: If you lock your keys in the car and the spare keys are at home, call someone at home on their mobile phone from your cell phone…

Hold your cell phone about a foot from your car door and have the person at your home press the unlock button, holding it near the mobile phone on their end.

Your car will unlock. Saves someone from having to drive your keys to you.

Distance is no object. You could be hundreds of miles away, and if you can reach someone who has the other ‘remote’ for your car, you can unlock the doors (or the trunk).

THIRD
Hidden Battery Power
Imagine your mobile battery is very low. To activate, press the keys *3370#
Your mobile will restart with this reserve and the instrument will show a 50% increase in battery.

This reserve will get charged when you charge your mobile next time.

FOURTH
How to disable a STOLEN mobile phone?
To check your Mobile phone’s serial number, key in the following digits on your phone: * # 0 6 #

A 15 digit code will appear on the screen. This number is unique to your handset.

Write it down and keep it somewhere safe. When your phone get stolen, you can phone your service provider and give them this code.

They will then be able to block your handset so even if the thief changes the SIM card, your phone will be totally useless.

You probably won’t get your phone back, but at least you know that whoever stole it can’t use/sell it either.

If everybody does this, there would be no point in people stealing mobile phones.

FIFTH
ATM – PIN Number Reversal – Good to Know
If you should ever be forced by a robber to withdraw money from an ATM machine, you can notify the police by entering your PIN # in reverse.

For example, if your pin number is 1234, then you would put in 4321.

The ATM system recognises that your PIN number is backwards from the ATM card you placed in the machine.

The machine will still give you the money you requested, but unknown to the robber, the police will be immediately dispatched to the location.

This information was recently broadcast on CTV by Crime Stoppers
however it is seldom used because people just don’t know about it.

Beverley’s CD Launch

April 24, 2009

BEVERLEY’S CD LAUNCH  
Sat 29 August 2009 @7pm

beverly-81200x200  

Beverley’s pop rock music is based on biblical lyrics to encourage you in your walk with God and assist you in your spiritual growth. 

Register Online at:-
http://www.BeverleysGospelMusic.com

 Servants of Jesus Centre
15 Park Rd Seven Hills
 
 

LIMITED SEATING -Tickets $10 each 

Give and it will be Given unto you

April 17, 2009

In the bible, God promises that if we give generously to God,  in faith, with a pure heart, then God will  give back to us. Here are some bible verses which confirm this promise that we can meditate on:-

Luke 6:38 –  Give and it will be given to you, a good measure pressed down, shaken together and running over,  will be poured into your lap.  For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

Psalm 112:5 – Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice

Proverbs 11:25 – A generous man will prosper, he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.

Proverbs 22:9 – A generous man will himself be blessed for he shares his food with the poor

Proversb 11:24 – One man gives freely, yet gains even more;  another withholds unduly but comes to poverty

2 Corinthians 9:6 – Remember this, whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.

Proverbs 3:9-10 – Honor the Lord with your wealth,  with the firstfruits of all your crops.  Then your barns will be filled to overflowing and your vats will brim over with new wine.

I was listening to a teaching CD by Marnie L Pehrson entitled “Faith Precedes the Miracle“.  Disc 3 is about Gratitude and Giving.  She states that the eternal law found in the bible says that you cannot give without eventually receiving at least ten times as much in return.  This means if you give $1 to the poor or a worthy cause, you will eventually receive $10 or more in return.   If you give $10 you will receive $100 or more in return and so on.  I’m not sure where she obtained this calculation from.  However she goes on to challenge her listeners to test this law out for themselves to see what happens.  Sometime ago I did actually test this out by giving $20 extra per month to a charity I was committed to and I believe it did come back to me in a tenfold way, in that my monthly car insurance payments were reduced substantially due to a certain event.  Of course we should not have an attitude to give only to receive .  Also we must give in faith and with a cheerful heart because without faith it is impossible to please God.

Marnie also suggests that it is good to give away things that we don’t need anymore so that others may benefit.   She emphasises the point of giving it away.  If we sell the items for money than the amount we obtain for the sale is all that we will receive.  It is only when we give,  that it will return to us tenfold.

In Malachi 3:8-11 it says:- “Will a man rob God” Yet you rob me. “But you ask ‘ How do we rob you?’ “In tithes and offerings.  You are under a curse – the whole nation of you-because you are robbing me.  Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house.  Test me in this,”  says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.  I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit,”  says the Lord Almighty. “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,’ says the Lord Almighty.

In this passage God even asks his people to test Him on this point, that is,  to obey Him in regards to tithes and offerings, and see that God will provide for all their needs and possibly more. 

A point to note is that the sowing and reaping will more often come from two different sources.  When we give to a certain person,  or christian cause,  it does not necessarily mean that the same organisation or person will bless us in return (althought this could occur too).  More often than not the blessing or return will come from another completely different source or a completely different way.  This allows us to know that God is working on our behalf in His own supernatural way and is not through man’s own doing.  Also the return may not always come in the form of cash but could also be a reduction in debts owing,  a free gift that was needed and so on.  God cannot be limited in the ways that he chooses to give to us. 

Another important point in the teaching is that we will not always know exactly when we are going to reap what we sow.   It could be the following week , the following month or whenever God sees it is the suitable time. 

There is a verse from Ecclesiastes 11:1 which says “Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it again”.  This means,  that if we keep on putting out good,  and helping  others, then eventually it will return to us in our time of need.

In Malachi 3:8-11 it also talks about the overflowing abundance that God can sow into our lives when we are generous in our giving.  Notice that the passage talks about not only tithes but offerings as well.  Offerings are amounts over and above the tithe amount, according to our level of generosity.   This can be illustrated in how God can transform a tiny pea seed to grow into an enormous pea tree through his power. 

I realise that many new believers or christians may find the issue of tithing and giving a very difficult one,  especially if you find your income or resources already limited.  I would suggest asking the Lord to help you build your faith gradually in this area.  Meditate on the relevant scripture passages.  Just start by giving a small amount, then gradually increase it over time according to the amount of faith you have.  Perhaps even test to see if the law of sowing and reaping really comes true for you.  See if your small amount will eventually multiply tenfold in the future.  This could then help to reassure you that God will indeed provide for you and not leave your whole family to starve.  Also the Lord will understand if you are new in the faith or in this area.  He will treat you with gentleness and build your faith with small miracles so that you can gradually expand your capacity to give.  “Test and see that the Lord is good”  Then you will enter the supernatural realm of Heavenly Economics.

Another point to note is that sometimes if people really want to give you something out of kindness,  let them give to you if you feel OK about it.  In so doing you are allowing them to be blessed in the heavenly kingdom. 

It is also important when we give or ask something of God, that we do so with a thankful and grateful heart.  This puts us in harmony with God.  Otherwise if we have an ungrateful and grudging attitude, this may block the blessings of God from flowing towards us.  God is always looking at the attitude of our heart which is most important to Him.  He does not look so much at our outward appearance but on what is inside of us.  This is what really matters to Him.

God himself is the perfect example of giving that we can follow.  He did not wait to receive our love first.  Instead he took the initiative and gave of himself,  gave his only Son to us.  Jesus himself also followed his Father’s example by giving of himself and being a servant to others.  It is because He first gave to us,  that now motivates us to give our lives back to him.

Let us continue to develop the art of giving.

A Prophet’s Reward Could be Your Reward

April 16, 2009

I discovered a passage in the bible a few weeks ago. It comes from Matthew 10:40-42 where Jesus says :-

” He who receives you (a disciple), receives me (Jesus) and he who receives me (Jesus) receives the one who sent me (God the Father). Anyone who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and anyone who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man, will receive a righteous man’s reward. And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is my disciple, I tell you the truth, he will certainly not lose his reward.”

This passage can be interpreted as follows:-  if anyone gives honour and or practical help to a righteous person ,disciple or prophet of Jesus,  then that helper will receive the same reward as the righteous person himself.  The word “prophet”  can also refer to a worthy Christian ministry.  Hence if we choose to honour and help another person’s ministry done in Jesus’ name,  then we will receive the same reward that that ministry will receive. 

This means that all of us do not need to be involved in our own full time Christian ministry.  Instead if we give honour , kindness, gifts or practical help to another worthy full time Christian ministry then we will receive their same reward.

This can even apply to non believers.  A good example of this was in the Old Testament where the prostitute Rahab  chose to help God’s spies by hiding them in her house. Joshua – chapters 2 & 6. In return even though her whole city was completely destroyed, she and her whole family were spared and enjoyed a new life as part of God’s family.

This concept is also evident  in Genesis 12:3 when God first called Abram
” I will bless those who bless you,  and whoever curses you, I will curse”

Let us consider and pray how we can bless the ministry of our place of worship or other worthy Christian ministries.

Fun Stuff 5

April 14, 2009

bevdress

Early charismatic training

Why Men Hate Going To Church

April 7, 2009

Here is a blog which may prove interesting reading whether you agree with the views expressed or not.

book

http://www.mychurch.org/blog/413771/Why-do-men-hate-going-to-church

Laughing Baby 2

April 6, 2009

See baby Ethan and his new fascination with paper.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cXXm696UbKY&feature=related

Fun Stuff 4

April 6, 2009

image001

In the end we will all have to stand before God to give an account of our lives.