Posts Tagged ‘purpose’


2 Timothy 1:8-10, 12
So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner. But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God, who has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel… That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day.

Most people I know including myself aspire to live quite lives that are not tied up in unwanted publicity and strewn with suffering and hurt. Our goal is generally to enjoy lives with those we love, to be good citizens, work less and earn more, live peaceable lives and leave a legacy of goodness for our future generations. Paul was of a different mould and seemed to attract the wrath of those in authority, had a way of getting under their skin with his strong words and boldness, was obstinate about his beliefs and refused to budge on them, had a mob mentality and encouraged others to be like him or so it seems from his letters. Why is there such a diametrical difference between Paul as a man of God and us? What is God’s word to us today?

Paul was a passionate man who lived to share his beliefs, whether as Saul or as Paul. His transformation was brought about by God who chose him for His own purpose and used Paul’s passion to share the gospel instead of rejecting it. To live as a Christ follower is to live as one who opposes the world because the world aspires to glorify the Devil and his ideals whereas Christ lived to serve God and direct the world to Him. To an unbeliever, it might sound like I’ve lost my plot about who is right from wrong but when we examine the life of Jesus through the Bible, we understand the difference between the lie we live and the life we forgo. To the believer in Christ, to live a life that pleases the Devil is to live an unperturbed life where we co-exist with the world but to live for Christ is to accept a life full of challenges because we take a stand against the Devil and for Jesus who destroyed death and gave us life everlasting through His death and resurrection. Are you ashamed to live for Christ?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Mark 8:38 “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”

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Philippians 2:1-3, 5-8
If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose… Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death—even death on a cross!

According to my dictionary, humility means a modest or low view of one’s own importance; humbleness. This is something we can ascribe to people with low self esteem or people who feel they are less than those they serve. It is a very defeated attitude in today’s world and therefore as much as we talk praise about people who are humble, we cannot aspire to it because it is not in us. When I had the inspiration for ServantBoy as a handle, it seemed to the world the worst way to portray oneself and I was told more often than not to change it as it embarrassed people who knew me. When I look at today’s passage, I am encouraged by Christ’s example and feel inspired once again.

So many traits of Jesus in His earthly life are painted by the picture of humility. He was born in poverty, He knelt and prayed to God the Father, He was surrounded by the lowest in society, He amassed no wealth, He rode on donkeys and He was even stripped, beaten and humiliated by being hung on the cross beside two criminals for no fault of His. If we are to serve Him as our God, how can we not humble ourselves below Him? How can we seek our own comforts before the comforts of those suffering around us? How can we justify our gain at someone else’s loss? God rewards us for loving His Son and living a life worthy of His name and that reward will be for eternity but to be blessed, we need to first seek His Son Jesus and live by His example. I hope you are encouraged by Jesus’ example and are proud to call yourself His own and live a life worthy of His name?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Matthew 11:29 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.


Ephesians 2:14-18, 22
For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit… And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.

As we continue to read through the rich text in the book of Ephesians, I struggle to choose the right passage as there is so much the Lord is speaking to me today. Even though I might chose a certain portion, I do encourage you to click the link and read the entire chapter to get a good sense of what God is speaking to us. Paul’s ministry was to the Gentiles (non-Jews) and the two people becoming one is about us, non-Jews, being reconciled with the Jews to become God’s chosen people. What hostility is he referring to one might wonder. With the current situation in the Gaza strip and the questionable response of the Israelites, it is a challenge to understand what God is doing but lets not focus on current affairs and politics but rather keep our focus on what God is saying to us today.

When I consider the life of Jesus, I see peace throughout His life here on earth even though he was troubled, betrayed, cheated, lied to, condoned, crushed and given the lowly punishment of death on a cross for no sin of His own. During His earthly stay, Jesus was constantly working to reconcile man to God and His message was one of hope. When we look around at life today, the last thing one can find is peace as there is strife and unrest globally. Having traveled to over 111 cities around the world, I am yet to find a peaceable place and the reason is that we are seeking peace in a selfish and broken place. Jesus however is offering us peaceful living in God’s presence for eternity and calls us, whether Jews or Gentiles, to be a part of His chosen family simply by faith in Him and what He came to do for us. My world is no longer driven by current affairs but by the leading of the Holy Spirit and I seek to glorify God in everything and live in peace with Him. What have you decided?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

Isaiah 9:6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.


John 4:19-24
“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.” Jesus declared, “Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.”

This incident occurred in Samaria and Jesus was talking with a Samaritan woman with whom Jews do not normally converse or have anything to do with. Sounds strange but such stereotypes exist even today. For Jews, talking and having any form of relationship with a non-Jew was sacrilegious and Jesus was going beyond that and actually sharing the gospel! The hope of the Jews was now being offered to all of mankind and the path was simple and straight but would always be against the grain of this world. The part of this passage that stood out to me was when Jesus said that true believers would worship the Father in spirit and truth. What did he mean by that? What is untruthful about how we worship?

Before I accepted Christ as my personal Lord and Savior, going to Church was a requirement and I never missed a week without going and doing all that needed to be done. I was an active and participative Christian and never said I was anything but a Christian. However, my heart and mind was not in what I did because it was ritualistic. When the wool of rituals were removed from my eyes and I saw the Lord calling me into a real relationship and that was when rituals were replaced by a relationship where I now live to serve him. Christ now is alive in me through his spirit and I can worship him in spirit and truth with my entire being. Do you know what I am talking about? Have you drunk the living water? Is your life now filled with meaning and purpose? If no, ask the Lord to remove the wool on your eyes and show you who and what he is and he will. If yes, I hope you are enjoying worshipping God in Spirit and Truth with all your heart and mind?

In Your Loving Service,
Vineet

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Beauty in the Bush


Luke 2:25-35
Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying: “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.” The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”

It is instances such as the one above which reveal in very small parts the complexity and the perfectness of God’s working in our lives. When we read this chapter, we understand Jesus to be the not so common child that most parents are used to. What’s even more amazing is the amazement that Mary and Joseph show when things are revealed to them about Jesus starting with the Shepherds arriving in the manger looking for him, then Simeon’s blessing and prophecy, then the prophetess Anna prophesying about Jesus, and Jesus telling them he was at home in the temple when he was a young child left behind. This calling of parenting the son of God was not an easy one specially when his whole development was God ordained and so divine. As parents, they experienced Jesus in as much awe as we experience him as our Lord and Savior but only that the relationship for them was reversed wherein they were his human parents too.

As we live our lives, what God calls us to do is to live it with purpose, not an earthly, selfish, self-centered one focussing on I, me and myself. Jesus welcomes us as we are in our imperfectness to surrender ourselves to him, he then cleanses us through his shed blood on the cross spilled for us, transforms us to make us a new creation in him and fills us with the holy spirit to lead us in our new purpose filled lives. His expectation of us from that point onwards is to live seeking his direction and leading rather than doing things in our own wisdom. Simeon served God faithfully and received the blessing of holding the savior of the world in his hands before he passed away. What a great joy for him and what a great joy it is for us that when we submit ourselves to our maker, we will not just hold him for a moment but he will hold us for an eternity and never let go!

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

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Christmas Bokeh


Matthew 27:27-31
Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around him. They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand and knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said. They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him.

After 27 days of following the life of Jesus Christ through the gospel of Matthew, we seem to have reached the end of his life. All those years of humble selfless service and the one eternal sacrifice of his life penned in a few chapters seems so little but amounted to an event that would be etched into the hearts and minds of billions of people over the years. Many would never believe that Jesus was anything more than a great teacher, a prophet maybe and at most a saint but few would actually be able to believe in him and be willing to submit their lives in his service. What is the mystery to this man and his life? If he was the son of God, why would we, the world, find it difficult to accept him as God’s son?

To answer that question, we need to ask ourselves what is it that we are looking for? To me it seems like everyone of us are seeking something which we can never find in our own strength and therefore refocus our attention to things we can work towards like careers, wealth, family, friends, status, power, prestige, respect, etc. However hard we try and however successful we are, there never seems to be the satisfaction of having achieved. In Christ, the pyramid of success is reversed because we are called to serve him and work towards his glory, not ours, because that was the purpose of our lives. We are called to bless those around us with all that we have and share the good news and in everything seek God’s glory, not ours. In this we have the most amazing gift of sharing eternity in God’s presence much after our earthly bodies rot into dust on this earth and we are a forgotten. Are you satisfied with where you are heading?

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

 

Seasons of Change

Seasons of Change