Fireside

Stones of Remembrance

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Psalm 105:5  Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles…

It is so easy to forget what God has done; even those pivotal moments that change us forever. They begin to fade as other things crowd out their importance. This is why God instructed the children of Israel to build a memorial of remembrance after the crossing of Jordan in Joshua 3 & 4. Twelve stones were laid, one by each tribe, as a permanent legacy to what God had done for them.

I too have stones of remembrance. Yes, I write on stones. These stones are my visual reminder of God’s promises to me. They represent ages, stages and life events where the word of God has been an anchor holding me fast during storms. On these stones are scriptures that represent a fresh work in my life; a new turning point. They are tangible reminders that I can touch and hold. Their words bring comfort, strength and hope. I read these stones and I remember all what God has done. They remind me of all that He will do and all that He has promised.

How do you remember what God has done for you?

Meditation by by Maria Egilsson

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Precious One

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“There is joy in the presence of angels of God over one sinner that repenteth” (Luke 15:10).

An American F-16 war plane piloted by Scott O’Grady, when flying over Serbia, was shot down by the Serbian army. There was neither any trace of the pilot nor news from him for five days as to whether he was dead or alive. On the sixth day, a faint message from O’Grady’s radio was received by another pilot. He was alive, hiding himself from the enemy. US rescue teams headed towards him with all precaution and in a daring attempt had him hauled up safely by a helicopter. The whole country rejoiced. It was reported that the weapons and machinery used in the rescue operation of this one person was six billion dollars equivalent to rupees 600 crore.

Yes, that is the worth of a human soul. How precious is the deliverance of a soul that is lead to salvation, delivered from eternal death in hell? It is for this purpose that the Lord Jesus Christ gave His life for my redemption and yours.

“Ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things as silver and gold… but with the precious blood of Christ” (1Pet. 1:18-19).

Rom. 3:24; Col 11:14; Titus 2:14; Heb. 9:12; Rev. 5 9-10.

Taken from the book “Light for the soul” by Dr. Daniel Sundararaj

Published by GLS Publishing

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Praising in Pain

Manna for the Soul rgb

Praising in Pain

“Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say, rejoice” (Phil. 4:4).
Hanna R. Higgins, the author of the book “Cloud and Sunshine“ was a bedridden invalid for over 50 years. As a young girl, she was afflicted with a strange bone disease, and her legs had to be amputated. She lived through intense suffering and pain, bearing everything patiently and cheerfully as she was a completely committed Christian. She was rooted in Christ, had faith in Him and abounded in thanksgiving. Everyone who came to meet and talk to her, went away feeling blessed. She used to call her bed the “Thanksgiving corner”. She rejoiced in her Lord and radiated Christian joy, peace and glory. Her prayer list for intercession for missionaries and workers included over 200 names and she prayed without ceasing. She used to pray for each one by name and send a letter of encouragement to each one of them at least once a year. Her book was written when she was 77 and she says, “I long for all to prove, as l do, that with our loving Savior’s help, it is possible to be happy under trying conditions.” Read Phil. 4:6; Hab. 3:17-18; Acts 15:25; 1 Peter 4:12-13; Heb. 10:34.

Taken from the book ‘Manna for the Soul’ by Dr. Daniel Sundararaj.

Published by GLS Publishing

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HT March 2017 quiz 27
HT Feb 2017 quiz

Optimism built on solid foundation

 

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Being content and happy pay rich dividends in our lives. If we have an attitude of looking on the bright side of life, there is a chance of good health. According to a report appeared on Daily Mirror regarding optimism and health, people who have high optimism may engage in a healthy lifestyle that minimizes health risks and increases health and well-being. Perhaps, when people have a positive outlook on life, they undertake actions more likely to produce good outcomes. Research team led by Dr Eric Kim of Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in Boston conducted a study on 70000 women about the positive effects of optimism. They found out that optimistic people a third less likely to die from conditions like cancer, heart diseases and stroke than more pessimistic people. Dr Eric Kim said, “While most medical and public health efforts today focus on reducing risk factors for diseases, evidence has been mounting that enhancing psychological resilience may also make a difference. Our new findings suggest that we should make efforts to boost optimism, which has been shown to be associated with healthier behaviours and healthier ways of coping with life challenges.”

Christians have one of the greatest optimistic teachings imparted by our Master. “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? (Matthew 6: 25-26). While the world’s optimism is totally depend on things on earth, a Christian’s optimism is completely relied on his faith in Jesus. Biblical optimism does not give much stress on earthly things. It can cope with any hard situations because it believes that “all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).

Randy Alcorn’s writing about Biblical Optimism is an eye opener. “If we build our lives on the solid foundation of Jesus Christ’s eternity-shaping redemptive work, we can be optimists. Why? Because even our most painful experience is but a temporary setback. Our pain and suffering may or may not be relieved in this life, but will certainly be relieved in the next. That is Christ’s promise—no more death, crying or pain; he will wipe away all our tears (Revelation 21:4). Indeed, any other foundation is sand, not rock. It will inevitably disappoint us.”

Jack Wellman in Patheos.com puts reasons for Christians to be optimistic. “Don’t we have every reason to be optimistic?  We have had our sins forgiven (Colossians 1:14).  We have had the righteousness of Christ imputed or accounted toward us (2 Corinthians 5:21) and we who have repented and trusted in Christ have eternal life (John 3:16).  This means that when Christ returns, we won’t have to face the so-called second death (Revelation 20:14) and that gives believers every reason to have optimism about their future.”

“Christ said to His disciples, who would suffer much, “Rejoice that your names are written in heaven” (Luke 10:20). Our optimism isn’t “health and wealth gospel” wishful thinking which claims that God will spare us from suffering here and now. Peter said, “Rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed” (1 Peter 4:13). Christ’s future glory, in which His children will participate, is the reason for our present rejoicing while suffering,” writes Randy Alcorn. Biblical optimism is much higher than the worldly optimism. It is rejoicing in sufferings and it helps us to trust in heavenly things, not the things on earth.

By Prakash P Koshy

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