DO YOU CARE ABOUT YOUSELF?

 

This is a question Jesus would ask any of us? How do I know? Because the Holy Spirit is helping me with the questions, which relate to our inner being. As I mentioned previously, God wants us to examine ourselves.

So, when it comes to this question, one would say; yes, because I look after myself.

And then he would ask; how?

Well, I wash my hair and make sure that I have a nice haircut. To be honest, sometimes I’m not even bothered about my hair, so I let it go wild.

Hmm…

I also make sure I bathe regularly, because I know keeping a good hygiene is important. And I also try to eat healthy, making sure that I have a good balanced diet.

Okay…keep going…

Well, I try to make good decisions to keep me on the right track.

What decisions?

Well, I decided to get married, which is good for me.

That’s good, what else?

I try to be a responsible person, that’s why I work hard sometimes, to pay the bills, and look after my family.

It is good to know you take responsibility to heart.

I also try to make good friends to make me happy.

The thing is, as you know, most of us want to have the good things in life. However, here is the issue, if a person really cares about themselves they wouldn’t want to face the wrath of God. People who listen to God through the Bible and want to be saved through Jesus really care about themselves. Anyone who cares would want to be forgiven for their sins. And they would avoid doing bad things because of the negative consequences. The scripture says, you reap what you sow.

THE PIT FALLS

There are two dimensions God wants us to be aware of. First of all, his existence as the creator of life and the world.  And the second one is Satan.  Satan is not acting alone, he uses his demons. (Revelation 12:7)

When you get to know the character of God which is based on love, justice, forgiveness and judgement, you also have to know the character of Satan, for he is just the opposite.

The biggest enemy you’ll ever encounter as a human being is not another human or another creature, but Satan. The devil hates humans, and he’ll do anything to harm.  Jesus said, he is the father of lies.  Every lie and evil thought in our minds is planted by Satan. The Bible says, The Devil has been sinning from the beginning. Jesus came to destroy the devil’s work and save mankind from his control. I John 3:7-10

It is true, that it is so easy to be controlled by Satan.  We all go through that.  Some of the tactics he uses are, manipulation and disguise.  We learn, that he is a master of disguise, to make someone believe they’re doing the right thing, when actually they’re in the wrong.  All the pitfalls we fall into are planted by Satan, for example, unbelief, lack of faith, drug issues, selfishness, hatred, etc.  But to sum it all, every kind of sin. In addition to this, as I mentioned in the earlier post, Satan also targets the core of our being, for example, our desires and weaknesses.  He wants people to stay on his side, and he also goes after those on God’s side. He also makes us focus on our disappointments, failures, problems, so that we lose our joy. The Almighty God, on the other hand, wants us to enjoy life by avoiding Satan’s pit falls, and to focus on the good side of life.

When we fall into his pit, it is difficult to get out of, unless a person turns to God, through Jesus.  Jesus is the only one who can rescue mankind from Satan’ s control. The bible says, if you’re in Jesus the devil cannot harm you.  What does this mean? The Holy Spirit says, when we live our lives according to the Bible, we get into God’s protection.  I can talk from my own experience, when I turned to God my life changed for the better, and I thank God for the transformation.

EMPTINESS

What makes a person who seems to have it all, but would feel like they’re empty at times?  We see it all the time in film stars, pop idols, and in our homes.  Some call it middle life crisis.  Normally, it is a feeling of emptiness.  God who created us knows us inside out. The feeling of emptiness starts at an early stage, as children.  When children feel it, they try to fill it with game activities.  So, they play and laugh a lot.

When we get older we examine ourselves even more.  Thus, we try to fill our lives with more activities. We realise that we need a marriage, children, a job, and money, of course.  Once we acquire a piece of this and that, for some reason we still feel unsatisfied.  We thought the marriage which started with lots of love, for some reason, it becomes a struggle.  That’s why every married person comes to a point and says, marriage is difficult. Why?  Because dealing with an imperfect person is not easy.  And when it comes to raising our children, because of their imperfections, obviously a parent would struggle sometimes.

And when it comes to our jobs, we end up dealing with imperfect people, and that’s becomes a struggle, too.  And when it comes to money and so many other things, as King Solomon said, it is like chasing after the wind. Ecclesiastes 1:17.  It comes and goes. So, when it comes to those who have lots of it, they get sucked into it and it becomes a trap.   Once it becomes a trap, the more they become addicted to it.  And with addiction there comes all kinds of stress to the rich, as well as the poor.  Solomon was the richest man in the world, he went after he wanted, at some point he called it madness.  This is someone who knew God, and his wisdom, and then he messed up big time.  After a while he examined his life, the negatives and the positives, sometimes he lost it,  and he then realised that nothing surpasses God’s wisdom and plan.

It is funny how sometimes we lose interest in things quickly.  I remember going to a friend’s party.  She decided to have it in one of those posh hotels.  Well, one of those expensive ones in London.  So, out of her good heart she invited a group of Christians. It was good, because we wanted to have fun, as well as, loving the Lord.  When I got in that hotel I was overwhelmed by its interior beauty – golden taps, marble floors, and beautiful carpets.  I thought this was a place to be.  We danced and had a good time.  After the party I kept on thinking about the hotel. The more I thought about it, the more I talked about it to my friends.  When I decided to go back again, I took a friend with me, but for some reason, I didn’t feel that wow feeling  I had before.  Why? I got used to it, which is so much in our human nature.

God Almighty made the heart to be the centre of our being. The physical one, as you know, controls our whole body. But the spiritual one is also crucial, and this is where we feel the emptiness.

Jesus said, ‘in me you’ll have life. I am the bread of life’. John 6:33-40. You have to remember Jesus like God Almighty knew a human being in detail. God knows whatever we do or run after, nothing, I say it again, nothing will ever fulfil as Jesus does. When a person has Jesus in their hearts and obey what he says they have life to the full.  He said, ‘I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full’. John 10:10

THE SECRET TO HAPPINESS

God Almighty watches as we struggle with life.  He has all the solutions to our problems.  It  is his plan that everyone of us has to go through trials, even Jesus who never sinned had to go through them.  The scripture says, especially to those on his side, ‘consider it pure joy, whenever you go through trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.  James 1:2-5

In most cases, when we go through difficulties, we develop a strong character, especially if we have a positive attitude.  As you know, there are some problems which will never go away, no matter what we do.  However, God wants us to take refuge in him.  When we acknowledge that we need his help, he gives us grace – kindness, strength and peace.  The scripture says, it is important to ask God for wisdom, for when we seek his guidance, he’ll always provide  an answer.

He knows our power is limited, but his power is limitless – trillions times stronger than ours.  In my Christian experience, with every trial I turn to God  and he always helps.  We have to remember God Almighty uses words to do things.  When he created the world, he said, ‘let there be ..’ So, the Bible is special, it is the only book he holds dear to his heart. God uses it as a tool to accomplish his plan.

Holding the Bible is like holding Jesus’ hand – he is the word of God. John 1.  So, when you feel depressed, stressed out, or scared –  sit down comfortably in a quiet place or kneel, close your eyes, hold the Bible firmly with both hands, pray and ask God for help. Believe me, I’ve tried it and it works wonderfully.

The Centurion understood this concept that God and Jesus operated in the same way, that’s why he said, ‘say the word…’. Luke 7:1-7 Jesus was impressed by his faith, eventually his request was granted.

DID YOU GO TO CHURCH?

This is something many think about from time to time.  Most of us are aware that Sunday has a significance to remind us about worshiping God.  Here is the issue, some try and give up.  Why? Because they lack faith, others, however, when they understand they don’t give up.

What is the purpose of going to church or a meeting of fellow believers?  We learn from the Bible, that it is God’s plan from the beginning  – It is a part of our salvation.  A way of encouraging  one another, for a group is stronger than one man standing alone.  It is in our human nature to crave companionship.  We don’t want to be alone.  As you know, it is in everything we do, e.g. a family network, cooperate companies, government institutions,  etc.

So, a meeting of believers is a way of standing in solidarity and love.  I’ve heard people say, I believe but I don’t want to go to church – believing alone is not enough, for faith without actions is dead. You cannot do one without the other. Jesus said, ‘where two or more are gathered together I am with them’.  Matt. 18:20. Which means a Christian meeting begins with two people.  Some early Christians used to meet in their houses, which is a practice some prefer to use even to day, others, however, prefer to go to a larger gathering.

Therefore, it doesn’t matter to God, whether you decide to form a small church meeting in your house or vice versa.  What matters is you are in his Kingdom.  The first thing Jesus did before he started his ministry was to form a group of disciples, twelve in all.  He set us an example, that anyone can start a ministry, especially if it is a man. Why a man? Most of the prophets God used to do his work were men.  Why does the Bible emphasize on the men to be the leaders of church meetings other than women.  No 1. Because a man was created first.  As you are aware, a man’s voice has more authority. There is also another quality God put in  every man which women lack.  Someone may ask, what quality?  A man has a way of handling emotions better than a woman.  When there is a disaster,  men are more capable of handling the situation  than  women.  That’s why the responsibility of leadership lies with the men more than the  women, not only in their homes but in a church organisation.

It is all in God’s plan, for he knows us in detail.  He knows what works better, and he advises us to do it his way.  However, If a woman wants to lead, she should ask God for wisdom, for that decision is between her and Yahweh God.  As you know, Jesus is the overall leader of God’s people, and he had to be a man.

And when it comes to sharing the good news , God wants everyone of us on his side to do it in love.  What I have done in this blog is to switch on the light, through God’s grace.   God’s will is, when he gives you something good, share it – don’t keep it to yourself.  Salvation in Jesus is the best thing that could ever happen to a human being.

THE BEST JOB IN THE WORLD

When I read what Jesus said, it opened my mind.  He was challenging the Jews who were giving him a hard time. John 6:26.  He said working for him is better than working for food.  It made me realise, it is so true!  Working for Jesus, is the best job in the world, better than diamonds, money, or anything in the world.  It seems like anyone who works for Jesus is put in a higher position by God above any other position in the world.  And the position is free to anyone who wants it and nothing can take it away.  He is the Boss of all.  He eventually promotes you to eternity.  Isn’t that wonderful?  Millions are doing just that.

And he says, to be promoted, first you have to believe in him, and do what he says.  For, he has been given authority by God to judge.  He is the King of all, God put him in a high position which is above all angels and humanity. The Holy Bible says, ‘ every knee will bow before him’. Philippians 2:10.

So, it is with anyone who loves God, and goes on to share the good news about Jesus to someone, Mathew 28:17-20.  When you work for him, he is your Boss, for without him it is impossible to please God.  Working for Jesus is the same as working for Jehovah God the Father, the creator of heaven and earth.  For what Jesus says, is exactly what God says!

In our secular working environments, we are slaves to who we work for. Workers normally want to please the boss, by making sure they do a job properly, so that they can keep their place in the company, or get a promotion and a pay rise.  No one desires to be sacked, especially when they know the job is their lively-hood.

So the same with Jesus, he has the power to sack you if you don’t listen to him, also to approve who is fit to enter into God’s kingdom and who isn’t, because God gave him that authority. John 15:2

When it comes to salvation, first of all, he said, ‘you must be born again’ John 3, which means a total transformation… before you didn’t know, now you know, before you didn’t understand (spiritual blindness) now you understand, before you didn’t have the Holy Spirit now you have it. Before you didn’t listen to God now you listen. Before you didn’t walk in his guidance now you walk. Before you didn’t care about being saved now you do.  And then he mentions, water baptism as a symbol of commitment, (it is like signing a contract of salvation). Acts 2:38, and chap.3:23

DO YOU KNOW THE RIGHT WAY?

Do all religions lead to God? This is a question many people ask.

God wants us to know and understand what happened in the past before the coming of Christ his one and only chosen Son to redeem mankind.  When you read the Bible, you get to understand how the Israelites came about. They were descendants of Jacob’s twelve sons.  We learn that God was pleased with Abraham.  Jacob was Isaac’s son from Abraham. Genesis 12 -50 Exodus 1 – 14

So, the Almighty God decided to start his big movement of deliverance through them.  He did it step by step while preparing the coming of his Son.  While he chose them, he had to teach them, and lead them from one land to another, so that his plan could be fulfilled. Note: they didn’t choose to serve him, in the end, some of them rebelled and by doing so they had to face the consequences of their actions.

So that was the Old Covenant, but when Jesus came, things changed forever, thus creating the new order.  In the new covenant, we have to choose whether we want to be on his side or not.  As mentioned before, whatever decision we make,  we determine our destiny.

So nowadays God examines the heart, for it is in your heart you decide to do the right thing or not.

So, let’s go back to the question; do all religions lead to God?  And Jesus’ answer is ‘NO’.  How do we know this?  He said, ‘I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’. John 14:6.  We learn from the Bible that Jesus was like God the Father, he couldn’t sin or lie.  Remember he said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me’. Matt. 28:17.  Which means, God loved Jesus more than anybody else in the world and in heaven, that’s why he gave him all the power.

We also learn from Cain and Abel, that God doesn’t accept any kind of worship. Gen. 4 Cain thought he was doing the right thing, but he was rejected while Abel was accepted.  The same stands today, some people think their kind of worship is right, little do they know, that God had already rejected it.  The Scripture says, the worshipers must worship in truth and the spirit (holy spirit). John 4:23  When it comes to the truth, God made sure that all the true prophets point to Jesus, i.e.  Abraham, Isaiah, Jeremiah, David, Moses, Ezekiel, Daniel, Zechariah, etc.  They all understood that God’s plan has to be totally pure without blemish, and the only one who can fulfil that was Jesus.

Therefore, to be accepted by God a person has to be perfect like Jesus.  For without perfection we cannot be accepted.  We’re all imperfect because of sin, and the only chance we have is Jesus.  We also learn from the Bible even the true prophets sinned, so they also need Jesus.  So that means to be accepted by the Almighty Holy God, the creator of all living beings, a person has to approved by Jesus. Matt. 25:31-36

THE PEARLS

When you examine the character of God, you get to realise that he is very interesting, serious, very kind and loving.  To understand this, you have to look at the good side of us. As I mentioned before, we inherited a portion of his character..

Another part of God’s character which I find very fascinating is that he wants us to find the hidden pearls. You may ask, what do you mean?  I’ll explain; as you aware, all the precious stones are hidden underground, and then you find the precious pearls in oysters. This is synonymous with a Christian message which we have to dig and find it in the bible, and in Jesus.  And when to comes to God you have to seek him, and if you do, you’ll find him.  For we get a period in our lives when we don’t know him, but when we decide to find Jesus we also find God, because the Son and the Father are similar in every way.

Another way of explaining it, as Jesus mentioned, why throw your pearls to the pigs?  We learn from that, all of us have hidden pearls stored in us.  You may ask again. What do you mean? I’ll explain; the pearls are all the good qualities in us, for example, when God created us as a man or a woman that’s our pearl.  For, we are all wonderfully made; which also means every talent or skill he put in us is special. Every good thing in us is of high quality, and every good thing we’re able to do is a pearl.

So, when Jesus asked, why do you throw your pearls? Matt.7:6.  He means, when you have something of a high value, don’t misuse it. What happens when you throw your pearls to the pigs? You guessed it! They’ll trample on them, and make them dirty.  Now we understand every part of our body is precious, and the question is, why ruin your special qualities, or ruin your life? The reality is, most of us have done this, but wisdom helps us to amend our broken pieces.

And Jesus goes on to explain, our good behaviours and thoughts are like pearls. So, when you are on his side you keep your pearls, instead of picking rubbish (wrong decisions) which have no value, you pick the pearls (good decisions).  And the scr. also means, those on the other side (left) are watching those on the right. (God side). The moment a Christian believer,  a Pastor or a Priest does a wrong thing,  it is discouraging, and puts people off Christianity, but when they see a person showing humility and a repenting attitude, they get encouraged.  Christianity is the only religion which is in the light because of Jesus.  The world  need good preachers, good Christians , and we all need to wake up.  For life is short.

ARE YOU AT PEACE?

When you examine the Bible, you get to understand that, this is a kind of question God and Jesus would ask. God looks from heaven and sees mankind in chaos from time to time. As mentioned before, God wants us to reason well and every question is to examine our lives. And if we sit down and answer this question, we’ll all give reasons why we are not at peace. Someone might say, ‘I’m not at peace because of so and so, or because of this situation, or because the job is getting on my nerves, or the money issues, and the list goes on.

Peace is precious, and you can’t put any amount of money on it. It is a gift from God. Every time we get a sense of peace, it is because God has allowed it for a reason. And the reason is, because he wants us to enjoy life.

Jesus said, ‘in this world you’ll have troubles but in me you’ll have peace’. Anyone who is in Christ would tell you that the Holy Spirit gives you tremendous peace, there is nothing in this world is like it. Peace creates happiness. The scr. Says, cast your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7.

And if you lose your peace, ask God to restore it. One thing I know, we lose peace sometimes because of sin. And Satan is behind all the chaos. But, whenever we do the right thing we gain blessings – peace. It is all in the Bible.

 

THE SECRET TO SALVATION

As the bible says, firstly we hear the message of God, secondly we see (an open mind) thirdly we act (putting the word of God into practice – repentance of sins) and we then ask for His Holy Spirit which carries the truth and leads us to salvation.  Now that our mind is open to Christ’s teaching, we live a life that pleases God.  So we shun evil and embrace goodness.

God made it easy for us; Jesus said, His yoke is easy… and that means Jesus’ ways are easy, they give us peace and joy, but Satan’s ways are harder and makes our lives harder to eventual misery.  We have all done something wrong at some point and have apologised to someone.  But a Christian way is to humble yourself, seek forgiveness from God, and say, I’m sorry God, from now on I’m going to change my ways and do it your way.  (Obedience) Just like a prodigal son.

Just like a parent to a child. When a child  does something wrong, a good child would confess to a parent. I’m sorry I lied, and then a parent would explain to the child with a warning not do that again or you’ll get a discipline.  Or when a child does something wrong, a parent would tell a child to go and apologise to the one they’ve wronged (confession). The same applies with God and his children, in the end we ask Him for forgiveness.  For God wants us to act in humility and love.