Jesus Calms the Storm

Mark 4: 35-40, “That day when evening came, he said to his disciples , “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him up and said to him, “Teacher don’t you care if we drown.” He got us, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still”. Then the wind died down and it was complete calm. He said to his disciples, “why are you so afraid!” Do you still have no faith?” When evening came, Jesus asked his disciples to go to the other side of the lake.

That day when evening came, he said to his disciples , “Let us go over to the other side.”

Have you accomplished what you wanted to finish for long. You have worked hard and now the end of the day of hard work has arrived – Isn’t it the time to celebrate!  Celebration is good but don’t let it become an excuse to delay the next assignment God has in place for you. God’s ways are Higher than our ways and He has destined us to be at a special time at a certain time. Sometimes, God wants us to wait for long without making a move and other times He wants us to relentlessly work for his Kingdom. He is the Lord of our lives and destiny. Let Him dictate the way you would celebrate your victory – resting and feasting with friends and family or get connected to the new project he has in mind for you.

Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 

When they left behind the crowd, they were in the boat and suddenly a furious squall came up. This was something the disciples had never expected to happen. They were with Jesus in the boat and here the boat was ready to be swamped.

Most of us expect life to go smooth once we determine to follow the Lord but No! Sometimes, the storms of trouble become more violent, things seem changing for worse and suffering and pain seem to become permanent dwellers.

Having Jesus in the boat of our lives is not a guarantee to live a painless life but  its an absolute assurance to have powerful covering of the most High God shadowing over us all the time. Its HIS sweet presence that negates all the ill effects of dark forces, keeping a child of God harmless and at peace in all situations.

Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him up and said to him, “Teacher don’t you care if we drown.”

Storm come to bring the real out of us…Pain, Hatred, Anger or Love, Joy and Resting in the Lord.  Jesus was resting amidst storm, but he was still actively doing what the father wanted Him to do at that very hour. He was defeating the power of the storm by not reacting in a way that was influenced by the raging storm. just being at rest, he was disarming the power of adversity. What storms you have today in your life? Rest in the Lord and you will declare yourself more than victorious in Christ.

He got us, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still”. Then the wind died down and it was complete calm. He said to his disciples, “why are you so afraid!” Do you still have no faith?”

Jesus said to the storm Be quiet! If you remain unaffected by the negative affects of adverse situations and stand up to speak up, all powerful force of darkness will run away. There is no storm that is strong enough to overcome a child of God. Lets stand up the way Jesus did against the storm. Lets gather our strength by being at rest in the Lord and speak up in Jesus name, and soon the storms will die and the sun of righteousness will rise to fill us up with healing in its rays.

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Love the Lord

Luke 10:27, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind.”

Love the Lord with all your heart  – It’s the desire of the Lord’s heart to become the centre of our desires. It’s His wish that whatever we want or pray for in this life becomes a means to get us closer to Him. Where our treasure is this is where our heart is. The Lord doesn’t want us not to enjoy the blessings that He brings into our lives but he wants to see himself in the beginning and at the end of those blessings. The reason is not withholding anything from us but to protect those blessings in Christ so that through them we may worship the father as he actually is and receive more blessings.

Our Lord wants to reveal the deep longing of his heart to his children but its not possible unless our hearts are willing to receive his truth and are aligned to walk in his purpose. Love relationship can’t be built in a day or two but needs conscious effort. The Lord needs our fellowship and wants his children to listen and learn from his word and meditate to know the purpose behind those words. He is available to tell us why he wants what he wants but that’s not possible without us coming to his presence regularly with an open heart full of reverence for Him.

May our hearts drive us closer to the Lord everyday as we strive to listen to him. May His love reveal the true meaning of love which gets reflected the way we love ourselves and others. May He be blessed for ever and ever!

Love the Lord with all your soul – To love the Lord with all of our soul is a daily struggle. Our soul has its own way and mind that need to be tamed to make it a useful vessel to glorify the Lord. Our soul desires what is contrary to the desires of the Lord’s heart. Our soul is aware of what to do but procrastinates and delays its own blessings. Feeding the soul with the word of the Lord is what it means to love the Lord with our soul. We can’t make our soul to eat the food its not accustomed to unless it has become a habit to find taste in the word of the Lord. The Lord desires to see a healthy soul that has been nourished by both spiritual milk and meat.

Love the Lord with all your mind – The mind that has found rest in the Lord is a powerful weapon against all the forces of darkness because of the indwelling presence of the unshakable peace of the Lord. Submitting the mind to the authority of the word of Lord is the first step in loving the Lord with all our mind. Our mind is the target of the attack of enemy who can easily paralyse it with negative thoughts and emotions if we are not equipped with the helmet of salvation.  The Lord has given us the weapons to protect our mind from the fiery arrows of the enemy. A vigilant child of God who has determined not to let his mind become battlefield of the attacks, makes regular use of Godly resources to remain unaffected and present himself in the purity of his mind to the Lord. Only a sound mind that has conquered the attacks can produce pure thoughts that are acceptable to the Lord.

Love the Lord with all your strength – When we first decide to obey the Lord, his strength takes over and work with our weakness to make us powerful in Christ. The Lord has given us his spirit that moves and energizes God’s children to accomplish great works for the Lord. The Spirit is our counsellor and our light to leads us into all the truth.  The spirit takes us out of the dominance of darkness and bring us to the light of the gospel so that we could be called “children of light”.   The Spirit fills us with spiritual fervour and enthusiasm that enables to accomplish great works for the Lord. Just acknowledge your weakness to the Lord and admit a desire to follow him wholeheartedly and you will prove that you love the Lord with all your strength.

To Love the Lord is a conscious effort, a habit that needs to be cultivated and nurtured every day. The Lord has blessed us in spiritual realm to lead a life that reflects our love for our God and saviour. Let’s make good use of the Godly resources and Offer ourselves to our precious Father as his loving child every day.

Justification through faith

Romans 5:1, “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Justification is what makes us righteous before God. It’s a status, a position that God desires all his children to achieve. He wants everyone to be declared justified before his throne so that they could receive the blessings He has set aside for them in Christ. No one can earn this title by their good works, Its only through grace that we are called to be righteous before God.

Since our good works were not enough to bring us the blessing to be called righteous, what did God to fulfill the desire of his heart to bestow the blessings of righteousness on his children? God designed a solution for the creation that involved the creator. He sent his own son, who came down in the likeness of human, lived under sinful nature yet remained faithful. Died on the cross yet became victorious on death by his resurrection. God’s plan doesn’t need the assistance of any human hand to make it complete. It is perfect and absolute for everyone.

But God’s plan of justification remains unaffected in our lives unless we accept it by heart and confess it by mouth. It involves the active participation of both our heart and mouth. Acceptance by heart is good but the full work comes to accomplishment when we confess it by our mouth that Jesus is the Lord. He is the only one who is righteous and it is only in his righteousness that we have been called righteous.

Trusting God and on his work doesn’t come in a day or two but needs daily spiritual exercise. Our mind runs contrary to the word of God by nature and needs to be bridled to make it believe what God has done through his Son Jesus Christ. A persistent child of God disciplines his mind to “believe to see” leaving behind the old pattern of “see to believe”.  A well-disciplined mind controls the other parts of the body, bringing them in complete harmony and peace. It’s this unique peace that flows to the whole body when a child of God comes in humble submission to the Prince of Peace.

Justification and Confession prepare an army of worshippers who offer perfect praise to most High God. Our God is God of hosts who lives in the Holy of Holies. Are we able to worship the Almighty without being freed from the feeling of guilt and shame? Is a man bound by his own emotions able to praise the living God? No! Justification and confession bring a unique freedom by saving a child of God from the negative effects of guilt and shame. It brings boldness and courage to speak out the word of God in the light of the freedom. It enables a child of God to see his new identity and position in the family of God, for the one who has been justified and the one who justifies belong to the same family. What a blessing! Justification takes us from our present position to a height where we receive the blessings that father has already assigned for those who are called righteous in Christ.

Justification is easy to achieve for our elder brother Jesus has accomplished it on our behalf. It doesn’t need religious rituals nor our good works to be proved, all it needs is a humble heart that cries out before the Lord that I am worthless and lips that confess that it’s only in Jesus that salvation and power are to be found.

Abide in Me

John 15: 1-4, “I am the true vine and my Father is the Gardner. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit while every branch that bears fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.

Jesus calls himself  true vine planted by the father. He describes us as his branches, branches that are not self sufficient but survive on the strength of the vine. Father has in-grafted us in Jesus and He knows our exact position in the vine. He knows the time when we will blossom and He has assigned a portion to each one of us in the name of Jesus.

Father wants the branches to be fruitful. He is happy that the branches are in Christ, but the deepest desire of his heart is to see the branches heavily laden with fruits. He wants to fulfill the desires of our hearts by answering prayers. When we bear fruit and show ourselves to be in Christ we bear fruit and receive whatever we ask for in prayers.

Jesus says, “Remain in me and I in you”.  Remaining in Christ is a process, a journey that needs our conscious effort every single day of our lives. Its a disciplined way of life that needs to be cultivated and refined. For a child of God, remaining in Christ is not an option but an essential way to live and grow in Christlikeness. To know about Jesus, His life on earth, his sacrificial death and resurrection is good, but mere knowledge will not take us anywhere unless we work hard to walk with resurrected Jesus daily.

Remaining in Christ is to remain in his name, peace, power, love, joy and word.

Remain in the name of Jesus – Jesus – The sweetest name in heaven and on earth. The blessed name!
No name has been given in heaven and on earth that brings salvation except the name of Jesus. Its the name of Jesus that brings deliverance and freedom. Its the power of the name of Jesus that protects from all evil and the deception of enemy. Its the name of Jesus that heals the sick and makes them whole. Its the name of Jesus that brings all the forces of heaven to complete submission to a child of God. Its the name of Jesus that takes over once you have said Amen to a prayer. Its the name of Jesus that is above every name. Remain in His name and know how powerful you are. When you remain in his name, the power and strength of his name flow to you, covering your name and giving you a new name. The name that father desired for you even before you came into existence. Know your new name, your new identity in Christ and remain victorious in all situations.

Remain in his peace – Remain in the peace of Christ by equipping yourself by the armour of the spirit. Be vigilant of the attacks of enemy and put the whole armour of the Holy Spirit every day. Just thinking that we are in the peace of Christ doesn’t do any good but actually walking in the peace does, which means not be perplexed and disturbed by the adverse situations that life brings to us. The moment you come across a disturbing situation, instead of discussing and sharing it with others run to the Lord to see the situation in His light.  Only He can reveal the truth about a situation and prepare you to deal with it by granting His own wisdom and understanding.
Remain in his peace by offering thanks to the Lord at the end of prayers believing that whatever you have asked has been done.

Remain in his power – Remain in the power of the resurrected Christ. The power that Jesus bought on cross for a price. This power is very much needed to walk with Christ. Blessed are those who make use of this spiritual strength in their daily lives. Focus on the power of risen Lord. HE is beyond the confines of any closed doors. HE appeared to disciples when they were indoors, telling us that he has free reign on every life and has authority over any period of time. HE can move in past and bring the future blessings to you. His ways are miraculous and supernatural.
Are you looking at a closed door? Look at Jesus, the one who has the keys.
No door is closed for Him neither in this life nor in the life to come.

Remain in his love – Love the Lord much more than ever before. Look for Him, Search Him, Seek Him, Run to Him. Don’t be satisfied with what you hear about Him from others. Check the authenticity of his word by spending time with the one who is the author of your faith. Learn from the teacher by spending time in his divine presence. If you complaint about lack of time, just make an extra effort to get up early in the morning to receive fresh manna from the one who Himself is Life and Light.

Remain in his joy – The joy that a child of God experiences by spending time with the Master is a powerful weapon to destroy the army of the enemy. The joy of the Lord fills us with a unique strength that enables us to keep our hopes alive in Christ. Be filled with spiritual fervour and you will accomplish much for the Lord’s kingdom and become a blessing for many.

Remain in his word – Obedience is necessary to see the miracles of Christ in our lives. When the Lord ask you to do anything, Go in obedience for the one who has commanded you will also strengthen you to bring his word to completion. Remain in His word and let the whole world know that you are His follower.

Remain in Jesus for that is the only way to receive life in all its abundance.

Your faith has made you well

Luke 17:11-18 talks about healing of ten me who had leprosy. It says that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem, travelling along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master have pity on us.”

They all knew about Jesus as a miracle healer so when they came to know that Jesus was passing by the village, they cried out in a loud voice.

How do you know Jesus? Is your relationship with Jesus based on what you have heard from others? Is your decision to follow Christ influenced by the experiences of a renowned preacher or your own strong desire to seek Him? The answer is crucial since it makes the foundation of your walk with Christ both in this life and the life to come.

When Jesus saw them, he said Go show yourselves to the priests. They went and were cleansed.

All of them were obedient and when Jesus asked them to show themselves to the priests, they didn’t hesitate to obey even though they were not healed yet.

How obedient we are to the Lord when he asks us to do something in response to our prayers and petitions? Do we need to see the answer  before moving ahead in obedience or can we proceed without seeing, believing that we will receive whatever we have asked for in prayers if we obey?

Our answer is always in obedience which sometimes appears just the opposite to what we are asking the Lord to do for us.

Are your prayers not getting any result despite your loud cries before the Lord? The reason might be not listening to the voice of the Lord or just ignoring what he is asking to do. The Lord might be saying something that may seem too hard to you to do. But don’t rely on your strength or mind for the one who is asking you to go will go ahead to prepare a way for you. Just obey the Lord for in your obedience lies the answer to your prayers.

One of then when he saw he was healed, came back praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him he was Samaritan. Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” The he said to him, “Rise and go, your faith has made you well.”

When the one who was healed came back to Jesus. Jesus questioned him “Were not all ten cleansed?”

When God has answered the prayers of his people, he expects his children to come back to him and acknowledge his mighty hand in their blessings. He not only longs to hear our prayers as a compassionate father but also waits for us to go to him when prayers are answered for that brings Glory to his Holy name.

What do you do blessings arrive in answer to your prayers? Do you run to call your best friend to share the news or rush to update your facebook status? These things can wait but there is the right time and place for everything and the moment your prayers get answered, rush to offer thanksgiving to the Lord. Don’t delay it even though you might think that 5 minute delay wont make any difference. When the answers arrive, leave everything behind and run to the King. He deserves the first place and priority in our lives.

Then he said, “Rise and go, your faith has made you well.”

Jesus acknowledged the faith of the one who came back to thank him.  What a blessing! The King of Kings and Lord of Lords commended his faith. He received praise from the one who is worthy of all praise and honour. God’s commendation makes everything new and whole – body, soul and spirit. This is what happened with this man. Jesus told him that his faith has made him whole.

Prayers never finish when we say Amen. They go beyond and prepare a child of God to receive more than what can ever be asked. Father is willing to give you much more than what could ever been requested. Just offer him thanksgiving!  sincere thanksgiving!  and, you will receive not just what you are asking but HIM whose presence makes everything whole and perfect!