30 November 2014

It’s hard to trust or rely on investment advice we get. It’s hard because nothing is certain and no one really knows for sure what will happen tomorrow. Just like many other cities in the world, change is the only constant. Buildings come and go, shops change every season, people immigrate and emigrate in and out. Nothing is permanent or certain and so there is risk in depending on or trusting any advice we are given about the future.

But God’s promises and covenants are unchanging and certain. They are dependable and they bring life and prosperity to those who listen diligently and abide in them. It’s the best investment advice we can receive and bet everything on. It will provide the highest return – in fact the most immeasurable return. Some see their returns quickly, some returns take longer, but they will come.

Lord God, may i depend more on your Word than on the words of the world. May i not be swayed out of balance from the things i hear and see, but may i trust completely in what you say. May your words be the best investment advice i take to heart and may your words sink deeper than anything else i see or hear.

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29 November 2014

The news, media and internet is streaming with information. We can watch and hear of things that frustrate us or bring us hope. Whilst we should keep in pace with what is going on around us, many times we have the tendency to only pay attention to the negative things around us. I catch myself doing this a lot of the time. If there is a negative piece of news, i would read it over the positive piece of news. It’s no longer about keeping abreast with the latest stories, it’s about feeding negative or even evil thoughts into my mind.

Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Lord Jesus, i choose hope over despair, i choose reconciliation over blame, i choose freedom in Christ over the things of the world that weigh me down and draw me away from your perfect peace.

28 November 2014

Hebrews 7: 22-25: “Because of this oath, Jesus has become the guarantor of a better covenant. Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”

It’s such a beautiful thing to know that Jesus lives to continually pray on our behalf. We may not always be disciplined enough to pray for our own spiritual growth, but in this lack, there is also assurance that the Holy One is constantly praying on our behalf to the Father.

Just before Jesus was betrayed, Jesus also said a prayer for each of his disciples and us. It is recorded in John 17 – The High Priestly Prayer. I find it the most beautiful prayer recorded in the bible for us. A taste of what Jesus continually does on our behalf because of his love for us.

Lord Jesus, thank you for your intercessory prayer for each of us. Thank you that you see all my weaknesses and sins and are praying on my behalf at the mercy seat of the Father. May i be forgiven for the things i have done wrong and may i receive healing and transformation through your prayer on my behalf. Thank you Lord Jesus.

27 November 2014

Paul wrote about the importance to live in the Spirit of God. Living in the Spirit or by the Spirit is one of the most abstract requirements of a disciple. In the Old Testament, we had rules to follow – do not murder, do not steal, do not commit adultery, do not worship other gods. They were straight forward enough to understand and it was clear to anyone if this was obeyed or not.

But in the New Testament, Paul calls us to live by the Spirit. This is not just him saying that it would be ideal and beneficial. I think Paul is actually commanding us to do so. In Romans 8:13: “For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

I believe Paul is emphasizing our dependency on the Holy Spirit to break free from the power and lust of the flesh. Like it or not, we still live in the flesh whilst in this world and if we could depend on our own strength and discipline to break away from the corruption, Jesus would not have had to come and die for our sins. Jesus knew we needed him before we realized our need for him. So we recognize our need for the Holy Spirit in order to break away from the corruption of the flesh. Every moment of every day.

As the song goes, “Lord, I need You, oh, I need You, Every hour I need You, My one defense, my righteousness, Oh God, how I need You”. Lord i do need you more than i realize. Holy Spirit live large in me, help me live through you and not me.

26 November 2014

I realise that one of the most exciting and fulfilling times as a Christian were the times when i was most prayerful. I don’t pray as much as i should. Sometimes it does seem like too much effort to pray and i end up going without prayer for a long time.

But i was reminded tonight that in the times that i had prayed, whether to prepare myself for a meeting, or to pray for someone else, it has always brought a sense of hope and anticipation of what God would do. More often than not, i am pleasantly surprised and the more i did pray in those times, the more i saw God’s hand.

I don’t know exactly what causes me to pray more or less, but i am convinced that without being intentional about prayer, i will do less and less of it. Prayer is not just reserved for times before meals or before bed – but neither it doesn’t have to be long and drawn out. I once prayed a 5 second prayer during a meeting and after the meeting, i thought back at how it went and it actually went very smoothly (as well as the rest of the day after it). I don’t think prayer always changes events, but i do believe prayer always changes us. Our outlook, our thoughts, our responses to things that follow our prayer, and ultimately, it may these smaller things that change the bigger outcome of things.

Lord Jesus Christ, may i stop neglecting prayer. May i know the power of prayer, may i know the intimacy and joy it brings as i draw nearer to you in prayer. May prayer open my hear and eyes to your loving presence in every detail of my life. May it bring peace, hope and miracles to come.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

25 November 2014

I believe that keeping a habit of dedicating things we do to the Lord will help to sanctify whatever we set out to accomplish. There is a holiness in giving or dedicating things to the Lord. Whether it is hopes and dreams, decisions to make or good intentions that have yet to materialize – we can ask God to sanctify all these and make them holy. Holiness is another word for perfection. Many strive for perfection and some may even think they have achieved it through their sheer efforts, but that may be far from the truth. It is God that makes us holy or perfect, we cannot make ourselves or anything we touch or do – holy or perfect. That is why Jesus died for us, because we could never reach holiness despite our most sincere and best efforts. Leviticus 21:8 states it well: “You must treat them as holy because they offer up food to your God. You must consider them holy because I, the Lord, am holy, and I make you holy.”

Lord, i acknowledge that even my best intentions will not be perfect. As i offer up more and more of the things that occupy my mind, time and life, i pray that you will bless it all. Not just to bless so that it prospers, but more importantly Lord, bless so that what may begin imperfect, can be made perfect and holy because it is offered to you.

24 November 2014

There is an attitude of entitlement in many of us. I easily find myself feeling entitled to many things which are not necessarily “as of right”. The spirit of entitlement stifles the spirit of thankfulness and praise. I find myself praising God a lot less and overlooking the many things that are going so right for me when i embrace this spirit of entitlement.

The truth is that i am not entitled to much at all. Most of what i have was given to me. Although i have worked hard, i was handed many opportunities and resources to succeed.

Lord, I have what i have because of you. You gave me all that i have now and it is true that everything is already yours. You give and you take away. So help me Lord to develop a spirit of thankfulness and gratefulness to enjoy your blessings and be inspired to bless others with what i have been given. I reject the spirit of entitlement. I embrace the spirit of truth and light.

23 November 2014

I can go through a day without realising the wonderful gifts that God has given me to enjoy. From the work i do, to the people i meet, to how events unfold and fall into place. It may be possible to miss the many blessings God has gracefully poured into my life day after day.

If i hold on too tightly in anticipation of a certain one thing which i am hoping in prayer to have, i might miss the other gifts that God is pouring out into my life.

Lord may you forgive me for not seeing and being grateful for the wonderful gifts you have poured into my daily life. I know i am blessed to be in you. I am blessed beyond measure to know you are my God and that i have your forgiveness, redemption and grace.

22 November 2014

Relationships can be easily abused. The relationships can often be a matter of networking, increasing social status and opportunities. There are also the toxic relationships of couples when each is trying to fulfil their own needs and demands through the other person. These kind of relationships are easily discarded when the usefulness of the other person is spent or exhausted.

True relationships are based on genuine love and care for the other person. The point is not how useful the person is to me, the point is how well we each appreciate the sacrifices each other makes for growing and strengthening the relationship.

Our relationship with God is probably one of the “easiest” but most crucial relationship to have. It is easy because God is always good, always fair, always loving and always truthful. It is the most crucial because God is the only relationship that will sustain and strengthen our spirit – with him, all our other relationships are more easily aligned. Without him, our other relationships can be easily misaligned.

Father Lord, thank you for desiring a relationship with me despite my flaws, inadequacies, my impatience, my rudeness and my lack of faith at times. Forgive me Lord and renew a steadfast spirit within me and a desire to strengthen my relationship with you.