Posted by: springsinthedesert | March 17, 2014

Friend of God

What a privilege it is to be called as a friend of God ! Have you ever thought about it? The above key verse clearly tells us that Jesus would love to call each one of us, His dear friend. Friendship could be of many types. It could be just acquaintances . Some could be childhood relationships which was so very important at that time, but as time went by lost its intimacy. Yet there are other friendships that we carry so dear and near to our hearts..Here Jesus is not talking about mere acquaintances but real intimate relationships.

Is it possible to be a child of God and not be a friend of God? You could be saved and be born in the family of God, but never have that intimate relationship with Him. Bible says that God spoke with Moses face to face just like a man speaking to his friend. But it was only Abraham who was referred to as the friend of God. Lets see what was so special about Abraham to be given this title.

Abraham obeyed God even when he did not fully understand God’s ways.

When God asked Abraham to go to the land that He is going to show , he never asked where, when and how. He just simply obeyed and trusted God to be faithful.

Abraham chose to be different from the crowd.

When he was given an opportunity to choose the land…he chose to be different from Lot who was pleased with Sodom.

Abraham believed God even in unfavorable situations.

It took long 25 years for his promise to be fulfilled, but never doubted God even when there was no ray of hope in the natural.

Abraham was willing to sacrifice the promise for his promise giver.

He was ready to place his dearest promise on the altar and live without his dearest son than to be disobedient to his God.

Bible says that there is no greater love than giving one’s life for his friends. Jesus showed us that intimate love and sacrificed his life for us. We are no longer slaves who are unaware of the master’s business, but co-heirs of Jesus Christ.

Jesus paid the price to make you and me a ‘ child of God’. Are you ready to be different like Abraham so that you and me can be called a ‘ friend of God’?

God Bless
Rani John

Posted by: springsinthedesert | September 25, 2012

Come To Me…Just The Way You Are.

God has been talking to me a lot about opening up to Him just the way I am. Church and religion has complicated this idea of a beautiful relationship with lots of so called “laws”. You need to have this robe of righteousness wrapped around you to come to His presence…you need to be holy and upright to call unto Him….and the list just goes on.

Knowingly or unknowingly, these restrictions prevent us from coming to the throne with boldness by constantly reminding us about our unworthiness. Today I would like you to introduce you to a woman who came to Jesus with a baggage of sin. In the Gospel of Luke, chapter 7, we read about a sinful woman who washed Jesus’ feet with her tears, wiped it with her hair and anointed him with an expensive oil.

If we understand the context of this scripture, we will see that this woman was an uninvited guest at the Pharisee’s house. This Pharisee had invited Jesus to dine with him. Though Simon, the Pharisee called him teacher, he did not have a welcoming heart. He might have called him just for a social status..or may be to have an opportunity to appraise Jesus with many other Pharisees.

In those days, when a guest arrived at a home, it was courteous to receive the guest with a kiss, a bowl of water to wash away the dust off their sandals and a little perfumed oil to adorn their hair. This Pharisee failed in his hospitality. May be there were many others whom he considered important than Jesus. Far away from the crowd, there is this woman, behind Jesus…sitting next to his feet. She is pouring out her heart. Tears are just flowing that it slowly started wetting his feet. For every tear that falls..she wiped it with her hair( those days, putting a woman’s hair loose was considered to be disgraceful), anointed his feet with the perfumed oil.

How did this woman get into this house? How did she get the courage to come into a place-a gathering of self righteous people-without inviting? Didn’t she understand the baggage she carried…it was not only heavy….but was a mess.

Let me show you the differences in attitude of two different people in the same place. This woman knew that she was a total mess…but considered herself in need of forgiveness and therefore a savior. Whereas, Simon the Pharisee was pleased with himself and thought that God would be too. He was a small debtor…He had kept the “laws” and so was righteous in his own eyes. May be few and there and a justification..”After all we are all human”. And the sacrifices he has offered would definitely cover all those tiny miny sins.

Today, we claim ourselves to be with Jesus…in the same room..fellowshipping with Him…How is our attitude? Do we have the boldness to come into His presence…just the way we are…may be we might have been messed up…confused…doubtful. Are we able to share our thoughts openly with Him or are we like that Pharisee holding onto that hypocrisy of ‘self righteousness’. Remember, when actions in a relationship are forced because of becomes a ‘LAW’…but when they are done out of love…they are simply called ‘LOVE’…and that is why the CROSS erased the LAW.

God Bless,

Rani John

Posted by: springsinthedesert | September 19, 2012

Be A Part In Rebuilding The Walls

I was reading the book of Nehemiah the other day and a verse from chapter 1 caught my attention. Verse 3 reads like this “Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire.

There is a remnant of exile in the city of Jerusalem. They have escaped the days of captivity and has come back to the land of Jerusalem. But they still are in disgrace and trouble because the city shows the aftermath of captivity. Its walls are broken and gates have been burned down with fire.

Here, Nehemiah, hearing about that remnant of people and the city of Jerusalem, is crying. He fasted and mourned for several days and cried unto God for them confessing his sin and standing in the gap for them.

Most of the time, in our urge to reach out the unreached, we forget about the people who are in the city of the chosen, still facing the aftermath of captivity. They are in the land of Jerusalem, still experiencing the strongholds of bondage. It could be depression, anger, temptations, resentment, confusion or bitterness. Its mainly because they escaped the captivity and returned to the land of living, but the walls of the land is still in ruins…its gates are burned down.

They need to be restored. Their souls need to be encouraged and strengthened. Their walls should be rebuild slowly so that they will once again feel safe and secure. Today, this person could be you. The door to your soul may be torn down. Just like Nehemiah, spent time with the Lord and He will restore you to your prior glory.

May be you know someone who face this kind of a reproach even after being a child of God. Do not ignore them saying that someone else will build them up. You have a responsibility to stand in the gap. They might be in a difficult position to rebuild their own walls. Take the effort to help them..ask Lord to use you to restore them. More than anything else, pray for them. Take every effort to bring one stone at a time and rebuild their ruins…so that one day they will be restored to their former glory.

God Bless,

Rani John

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