Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas already?!

Wow!I don't even know what to say.I mean it seems like only yesterday that I was making plans for 2010.Now 2010 is almost at an end.I have been trying to take stock of 2010,sort of a personal review mechanism and plan for 2011.What I realised was that God has been good to me this year and it has been a great year.This year I have learnt several invaluable lessons on life and I am really happy to have made it this far.
I have learnt,among other things,to bee patient and persevering but also to know when to let go.I have learnt to communicate more effectively this year and I have learnt the value of hard work.Above all else,I have learnt that God is faithful and HIS Grace will always be sufficient for me and for you as well.
As we spend Christmas and enter a new year,try and do a review of your year.Find out what you have learnt and where you have failed,but do not forget to count your blessings,for not everyone has got the opportunity that you have.Make use of every opportunity without wasting time because before you know it,the time for action will be past.
So what to say finally?Merry,Merry,Christmas and an Amazing new year!Don't forget to spread some cheer around this Christmas.Ciao!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The 21st Century Nazarite

Scripture References: Numbers 6:1-21, 1 Peter 2:9, Jn 4:23, 24, Rom 12:1
In the Old Testament days, people took vows to be completely set apart or dedicated to God. They were called Nazarites. There were laws for them to follow as long as they remained Nazarites. One could choose to be a Nazarites for a while or for a life time. The question then is, since Christ has come and the Holy Spirit is with us, do Nazarites still exist? The answer is YES!
The Bible says that we are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood and a holy nation. That is all that is needed to be a Nazarite. We are all Nazarites and are to live accordingly. But are the Old Testament laws applicable to us? Are we supposed to wear funny clothes and leave our hair uncut as was required? How do the Old Testament laws apply to us, especially as ministers of the Gospel being conformed to the Image of Christ?
1. The Old Testament Nazarites were not to drink wine or alcohol. Wine is a symbol of joy (Ps. 104:15).In taking the vow to abstain from all wine and strong drink, they were essentially saying, “Lord, you are going to be our only source of joy. We are going to rejoice only in you! You are going to be our one joy!”In much the same way, all our joy is to proceed from God. We are to rejoice in God through the Holy Spirit.
2. They were not to cut their hair as a sign of separation from the world and consecration unto God. Everyone meeting them was supposed to know that they were special, set apart for God. In our time, there is supposed to be a defining sign on us to show that we are Christians. People meeting us, even random strangers, should be able to say,”Hey, there is something special about them!” Do people meet us and have that reaction? Do they just know that we belong to God? If not, Why?
3. The Nazarites had one more law that amazes me when I think about it. They were not to associate themselves with death or the dead, even if they were family. Even accidental contact was not tolerated. The cleansing procedure if this occurred was stringent, for lack of a better word. In these end times, death is every where around us in the form of sin. Christ said we are the light of the world. We are not to have even a little darkness in our light.
4. The Bible says that if we believe in Christ, out of us would flow streams of living water. No death or dead stuff should come from us. We should not be associated with the sin of this world, for we are in the world but not of the world. We should be the very essence of our society, just as salt adds taste to food. Everything coming from us should be alive, vivacious and joyful. This means that our work, marriage, academics, family, relationships etc. should be alive, excellent and beautiful, not mediocre, dead and dull. Are we living lives full of joy, life and excellence? Do people see us and want to be like us, or at the very least, give glory to God? Are we attractive to others because of our lives?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Just The beginning

For starters, I know quite a lot of you may be wondering what on earth a shofar is and why I chose to use it in a name for this blog. Well, let me try and explain this as well as I can.
The shofar is a trumpet. It is usually a ram’s horn. In the Old Testament (of the Holy Bible) Joshua, Gideon, and Joab, to name a few, used the shofar to lead the children of Israel. It was used to announce, to alert or warn of danger, to call to battle, or to call to action. It is still used in Judaism to call the people to accountability on the day of Atonement (Yom Kippur).We read in Zechariah 9:14 that the Lord Himself will blow the shofar to call His people. In the New Testament, we read that angels will use the trumpet to announce the warnings for the ‘end times’ and, ultimately, Christ’s return.
Today, the Holy Spirit and God’s Word, the Bible, call out to us in much the same way as the shofar: God’s voice warns us, alerts us to danger, calls us to action or to times of rest, and, most importantly, calls us to accountability. The shofar sounded to announce the coming of the Lord. When it sounded, the people were to assemble, confess, and repent. When it sounded, the people were to worship. The shofar announced the Day of Atonement and Jubilee. It sounded in the midst of battle.
I t was a call to gather God’s people, a call to repentance, a call to enter into battle. God’s voice came to the multitude through the prophets in the days of old, but now the Lord speaks to each believer through the Holy Spirit.
Well, much as I would love to say I wrote that, I didn’t. It came from one of my favorite novels, And the Shofar Blew by Francine Rivers. Powerful book, but that is not the subject of discussion.
Now the part of the whole shofar revelation that gets me is that God still speaks. If He still speaks, what is He saying now? If the Shofar were to sound in the ear of your heart right now, what would it sound about? And since it is sounding in your heart right now, what action are you taking in response? Remember, it is a call to action, so don’t hear it and sit on it.
Well, a while ago the shofar sounded really hard to me and on the pages of this blog I hope to share some of that with you. If you hear the shofar now, don’t hesitate to share the message with the rest of us. For now, I would just like to say that in all your ways, Love…..