Sunday Praise and Worship: It is well with my soul

SundayPraiseAndWorship-50--AMP

Beloved, how have you been doing lately? Are you, like most people, struggling to keep up with all the changes in our world that seek to destroy our faith? Are  there situations in your life that feel like they will never end? Do you long for the day when you can live with Jesus in heaven? Me too.

One of the songs that gives me great peace during difficult times is “It is well with my soul,” written by Ho­ra­tio G. Spaf­ford in 1872. This video is the Jeremy Riddle version of the Horatio Spafford hymn, along with the amazing background story of how and why he wrote this song. The verses that impact me the most are:

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Please excuse any ads that may appear before the video begins

If for whatever reason you cannot view this video, you can read the complete lyrics here.

BlogSL2-smallest

Hope is Alive

Is40-31-Eagle-SnowCoveredMts-40--AMP

Hope is Alive

By Patricia Knight 

“Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength” (Isaiah 40:31). 

We were watching the final segment of a law enforcement show on TV. The police found the perpetrator of a crime hiding at his mother’s house. As officers were escorting the felon into their squad car, one of them lingered to offer words of hope to his mother for the probability of a shortened jail sentence. She immediately retorted, “hope is useless” and turned away. There was no doubt about the growing bitterness and hate that was seething from deep within her being. At the conclusion of the show, overwhelming disillusionment spontaneously erupted from her heart as the door slammed shut behind her.

Hope is not about what will happen to us or around us. Hope resides in God and in His promises. King David admitted, “In His word I put my hope” (Psalm 130:5).

Heb11-1-TextBox

Hope is not an inaccurately placed belief. It is a personal desire that we expect to have fulfilled. It is a true yearning, an expectation that God will provide for us as He carries out His promises. Misplaced hope is of no value. Only when substantiated by God’s promises can hope have significant meaning in our lives. “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1).

God is able to provide for every aspect of our future. All authority and power rest in Him, a guarantor of our hope. Just as God’s power worked in Christ’s life to accomplish His mission of redemption for all creation, He will also complete His sovereign purpose in each of our lives.

If we attempt to place our hope in ourselves or in anything finite, disappointment will ensue. Unless we place our confidence in God, our expectation for hope is dashed. No one is as worthy of our hope and our reliance on future good like God is. He is the author and embodiment of all hope. With confident expectation we diligently rely upon Him for anticipated results.

Godly hope renews our strength. Giving our hope to God, transferring it from our own inadequate efforts, liberates our meager inner resources. We are more fully equipped to do His work while we depend upon the Lord for all of our strength.

According to the felon’s mother, human hope is offensive. More accurately, true hope inspires and enlightens. God is the source of all hope. Our future rests in Him because   He has a plan for each of us. We can be assured that our life’s blueprint will be constructed just as He designed it for us.

“‘For I know the plans I have for you’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future’” (Jeremiah 29:11).

We are God’s workmanship. Let our hope reside in His design for us, for God doesn’t make mistakes—ever!

BlogSL2-smallest

Sunday Praise and Worship: My Hope is in You

SundayPraiseAndWorship--AMP

If you’ve been around my blog for very long, you know that I live every single day with several chronic pain illnesses. Some of you may be struggling with health issues too. Or they may be other circumstances that cause concern, anxiety and maybe even fear. Perhaps you pray to be delivered from your trial or circumstances, but day after day nothing changes. In fact, things may even get worse.

Beloved, hang in there!

Remember that our ultimate Hope is in our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ and no one or nothing else. The song “My Hope is in You” sung by Aaron Shust often runs through my mind, especially when I’m struggling with life in my little corner of the world. This section of the lyrics always soothes me:

I will wait on You
You are my refuge
I will wait on You
You are my refuge

My hope is in You, Lord, all the day long
I won’t be shaken by drought or storm
My hope is in You, Lord
All the day long I won’t be shaken by drought or storm

As you listen to this song, ponder the words of David as he sang his trust and hope in God:

My soul, wait silently for God alone,
For my expectation is from Him.
He only is my rock and my salvation;
He is my defense;
I shall not be moved.
In God is my salvation and my glory;
The rock of my strength,
And my refuge, is in God.

Trust in Him at all times, you people;
Pour out your heart before Him;
God is a refuge for us. Selah.

—Psalm 62:5-8

 
Please excuse any ads that may appear before the video begins

 If for whatever reason you cannot view this video, you can read the complete lyrics here.

BlogSL2-smallest

Hindu Jat people of India #InternetSaathi (CMI Reblog)

First published at Cataclysm Missions International (CMI) on February 20, 2016  

By Anna Popescu

Please visit CMI to see how you can become part of a team
to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with the world!

Hindu Jat people of India #InternetSaathi

InternetSaathi-CellPhone

The Jat people of India live primarily as farmers and mobile pastoralists¹ (nomadic herdsman), raising livestock. Their primary language is Hindi. There are an estimated 33 Million Jats, most of them living in northwestern India.

Overall, the Jats have a very good self image.”Men may come and men may go, but I go on forever,” is a well known Jat proverb. They are brave, hardworking people who possess both the desire and ability to rule. It has been said that no Jat wants to be ruled. Rather, he desires to have power over a group, if not over an area.²

The Jat people living in India are Hindus who follow the traditional practices of worshiping all Hindu gods and goddesses, and as farmers, most of them touch “mother earth” when they get up in the morning. They also pray to the sun god Surya when they are plowing their fields. The Hindu Jats are only 0.03% Christian and 99.92% Hindu. The remaining are listed under, “Other.”

In 2015, the Hindu Jat women were introduced to the Internet through the use of Internet cycle carts which are ridden from town to town in rural India. An article in the July 4, 2015 issue of The Hindu daily newspaper described it this way:

In a significant initiative aimed at bridging the technology gender divide, Tata Trusts have tied up with Google to launch ‘Internet Saathi’. The joint initiative announced today aims at empowering women in rural India with the power of the Internet so they may benefit from it in their daily lives. The initiative will provide basic training on the usage and benefits of Internet for women through specially designed Internet cycle carts that will visit villages to provide easy access to women.³

The photo at this link shows some of the Hindu women clustered around one of the Internet cycle carts.

SEE PHOTO BY CLICKING HERE

Hindu women are the keepers of their homes. They are very busy and do not have the extra time to take formal classes on how to use the Internet, plus cultural and social issues exist that may prohibit it. These Internet cycle carts come right into their villages where the women can take advantage of this mobile learning center without a negative impact on their daily chores and responsibilities.

The internet Cart would be available in the village for a minimum of two days every week for over a period of four to six months. Once the cart has completed the training in a cluster of three villages, it will be moved to the adjoining cluster for completion of a similar cycle.³

Teaching the Hindu Jat women how to use the Internet could be a major step in reaching out to them with the Gospel. Different portions of the Bible have been brought there through the years by missionaries, but if they are Internet enabled, they will soon be capable of reading or listening to the Bible online.

Right now there is an audio version of the New Testament available for them, plus audio versions of Bible teachings, Hindi Bible stories, talking Bibles, and the Jesus Film Project.

There is also a video version of the Jesus Film Project, as well as at least a dozen other videos, including Creation to Christ, God’s Story, and The Story of Jesus for Children.

All of the resources I’ve listed above can be accessed in the Resources section of the Jat (Hindu traditions) in India page at the Joshua Project site.


¹ http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/Jat.aspx

² http://joshuaproject.net/people_groups/12329/IN

³ http://www.thehindu.com/business/Industry/taking-internet-to-rural-women/article7383842.ece

BlogSL2-smallest

The Seven “I AM” Statements in John

Shared from GraceThruFaith.

The Seven “I AM”
Statements in John

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley
[Part 2 of 2 in the series
Summarizing John’s Gospel]

Recently I completely re-vamped a study I had originally written in 2003, entitled “The Seven Miracles In John.”  In it I showed how John selected these seven miracles specifically for their ability to help us believe that Jesus is who He claimed to be, and that by believing we might have eternal life.

In addition to these seven miracles John’s gospel contains seven “I am” statements.  Their focus is on what happens after we become believers.  You can call them part 2 of John’s underlying message to the Church.   In this study, we’ll  look at these seven “I am” statements to see what they’ll tell us.  Here’s the first one.

1. The Bread Of Life

Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. (John 6:35)

Jesus had recently fed the 5000.  Incredibly some were still asking for a miraculous sign to help them believe He was who He claimed to be. They brought up the manna their forefathers had eaten in the wilderness (Exodus 16:13-18), and that established the context for this statement.   I believe Jesus was saying the manna was meant to be a model of the Messiah. Whoever partakes of Him will never again know spiritual hunger. Like the manna, every one who seeks Him will find Him (Matt. 7:7-8), but each of us has to find Him for ourselves. No one else can receive Him for us, nor can we receive Him for anyone else. We all get an amount sufficient for our salvation. No one is lacking, none of Him is wasted.

As for our thirst, remember how Jesus told the woman at the well that the water He offered would cure her thirst forever.

Read the rest here.

BlogSL2-smallest

The Seven Miracles in John

Shared from GraceThruFaith.

The Seven Miracles in John

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley
[Part 1 of 2 in the series
Summarizing John’s Gospel]

In the past I’ve explained the need for 4 Gospels and the tremendous increase in understanding we can gain by comparing events from the different perspectives of each (read The Four Faces of Jesus). In this study we’ll  focus on the unique character of  John’s Gospel.

Due to his extensive use of symbolism John’s Gospel, written to the church, can be the most intriguing.  Everything he recorded in his gospel actually happened, but he arranged and described them in such a way as to convey additional truth beyond the obvious point of his narrative. Sometimes he even rearranged the order of events to underscore emphasize this additional truth.  John 2 is a good example of this. He placed the cleansing of the Temple right after the wedding at Cana to illustrate the point that the Lord came to create an intimate personal relationship with His church (as in a marriage), not to fix a broken religion.

The focus of John’s gospel is the Lord’s Judean ministry and really only the last part of that.  He devoted most of 9 chapters (John 12-20) to the Lord’s last week and used 1/3 of the gospel’s 879 verses to describe His last 24 hours. The first 11 chapters define the Lord’s ministry through John’s selective use of 7 miracles, and we’ll use them to show how John’s Gospel contains more than meets the eye.

Miracle 1, Water Into Wine (John 2:1-11)

This one is misunderstood by most and yet results in the disciples putting their faith in the Lord. (This, the first of his miraculous signs, Jesus performed in Cana of Galilee. He thus revealed His Glory and the disciples put their faith in HimJohn 2:11). It seems so insignificant when compared the opening miracles in the other gospels, which involved either casting out demons or curing leprosy.

Read the rest here.

BlogSL2-smallest