Remembering God

Life is going very fast and a lot of things are happening at once. One can see abundance of riches and also abundance of poverty. Abundance of projects everywhere, even as there is abundance of destruction. In the midst of all these contradictions, most people are running, running to somewhere and there is no time for that which really matters. We forget that God is all that really matters. Sadly speaking, people do not have time for God.

When everything goes well it is difficult, very difficult for us human beings to remember the goodness of God. We are quick to complain when we run into disappointments and never think of being grateful to God for the goodness we do have. At the same time sin is often excused – it is clothed as something not as bad as the Bible calls it.

But God is calling us to remember His goodness. Not for His sake, but for our own sake.

  1. God is calling us to remember the futility of a life lived wrong. Temporal gains and the false sense of control are fleeting pleasures and promises. There is simply so benefit in believing wrong, worshiping wrong.
  2. God is calling us to remember our relationship with Him. The connection with God is not just meant for crisis relief. It is supposed to be celebrated each day. We need to remember our relationship with God so that such thoughts have a bearing in all that we do or say.
  3. God is calling us to remember that we will not be forgotten by Him. The truth is, God is always aware and thinking about us. He never forgets us, even when we fail in so many ways.
  4. God is calling us to remember that our sins are forgiven by Him. That Jesus Christ has paid the price for us to be graciously cleansed of our sins and uncleanness. Also to remember that He is patiently bearing with all our weakness and errors. There is nowhere else to go for the remission of sins. Nobody can, nobody will forgive us the way we are forgiven in Jesus Christ.
  5. God is calling us to remember that we are redeemed by Him. Of course our redemption is legitimate, but more than that our redemption is also the beautiful story of God loving us and promising us of His love for ever.

Isaiah 44:21,22 – “Remember these things, O Jacob, and Israel, for you are my servant; I formed you ; you are my servant, O Israel, you will not be forgotten by me. I have blotted out your transgressions like a cloud and your sins like a mist; return to me, for I have redeemed you.”

Let us find ways to remind ourselves to remember God.

Amen.

God Is Calling You

God Calls Us –

The Call of God is His own vision and purpose for our life. It is not merely to utilize us; rather, the call of God envisions our life in its entirety, in it wholeness. Hence, the call of God relates as much to the way we behave, relate, rest, recreate, etc., as to the way we do specific acts of ministry.

We need to grasp the whole of God’s call and not just some performance related dimension of the same. In doing so, we can learn to live our whole life in the sacred. Which is to be understood as a life that is ‘set-apart’ for God. It may be difficult for us to grasp that God takes pleasure in all the aspects of our life. However, He is interested in the fine details of our life as we live it.

God Takes Us –

The people who are called by God are taken by Him to be made in His image and likeness. In that process we get to become what God wants us to be. The best of our natural talents and the finest of our qualifications are only raw materials in the sight of God. Our abilities, talents, and qualifications need to be processed by the Holy Spirit in the painful furnace of life experiences.

All those moments when we feel unused, under-used, misused, misplaced, wrongly placed, not considered, etc., are steps in the process of being made the person God wants us to be.

God Keeps Us –

The world is notorious for utilizing people and then when they cross the threshold of utility and monetary value are forgotten or discarded. God is, on the other hand, more concerned with us than what we can do. This can be realized by us when we understand that God is calling us to be with Him. He wants us. He wants to keep us forever. He cherishes us.

The heart of God’s purpose concerning us is intimacy and fellowship. And there is no substitute for that. No number of hours put in labour for God’s kingdom, no amount of money spent in His name can ever be a substitute for intimacy and fellowship with Him.

God Gives Us –

God chooses to give His servants (whom He has called, molded, and cherished) as per His own sovereign wisdom. A common aspect of this truth in different life stories is that God leads us to places that we are naturally not inclined to take. Francesca Lodi-Cabrini had decided at the tender age of six that she wanted to be a missionary to China. As she grew us, let alone serving overseas, she found it difficult to enter into the vocation of the church ministry because of her ill-health and frailty. She did not give up and she did become a nun. She kept on trying to go to East, to China, the land of her dreams and vision. She worked hard in all that she was directed. Finally, when she was considered to go overseas the church posted her to America, a place near New York. She set on that voyage, burning for ever her lifelong desire to serve God in China. She did not lose her heart of service though, and did an exemplary ministry. By the time she died in 1917 at age 67 – she had founded more than 70 hospitals, schools, and orphanages in the US, Spain, France, England, and South America.
We may think East and God may choose West for us. We may desire a particular vocation and God may place us in some work that we do not like. We may have to burn our good and worthy desires in the path of obedience to Jesus Christ. But that is the beauty of this mystery of being used by God for His glory.
(Inspired by Isaiah 42:6, ESV)

The Good Shepherd Leads

Jesus Christ our Lord God leads us like a shepherd with gentleness and care. Though, sadly speaking, in great ignorance and an almost equal measure of arrogance we tend to live out our life thinking that the favors and blessings of God in our way are of our own merit.

But where would we be without Jesus?

Not only do we need Him in times of distress and trouble. We need Him every hour.

What does it mean to be led by God?

  1. There are so many things prepared and provided by God for our life. That too, whatever He does for us, He does it with so much care and affection. Alas! When all is well, how many of us ever pause to realize the greatness of God’s providence in every little detail of our life. Our God provides for us.
  2. There are so many times when we need to be helped out by God. Those are the moments when we desperately need the Shepherd. It can be either the troubles of our life or the temptations that we face. Any problem that afflicts us and makes us desolate – we need only realize that our good Shepherd is very near to us and readily able to help.
  3. There are those crossroads of life when we are required to make decisions. Some may be easy, while a few may not be easy at all. In every cross-road of our life, when we do not know what would happen in the future, we need to listen and the Shepherd would lovingly speak out His heart to us as He gently leads us on.
  4. There are also some stretches in our life journey where nothing seems to happen, and the change we desire never comes. Our desire for progress is frustrated and God may seem to be strangely silent. Those are the days that require us to wait patiently for our God. Trusting God, even when we are not sure of His presence. He is there with us – always – watching over us with eyes full of love and care.

Isaiah 40:11 – “He will lead his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms; he will carry them in his bosom, and gently lead those that are with young.”