Wednesday, 17 November 2010


Recently it struck me how God must feel when I am not appreciative.

I had been mulling over an instance, feeling a little unappreciated for something I had put a lot of effort in to...for the curious amongst my friends wondering what it was? Actually, I can't remember which one of u had fallen short of my good graces at that particular point ;) keeps no record of wrong. One can sometimes experience ingratitude when the recipients are clueless about the amount of  your heart & effort that has gone into into what they have received, am sure all or most of us - self included have been guilty of same. Never the less I was probably half way through my thoughts ... how I was not going to over-invest myself next time et al when I had an epiphany and I heard the thought 'if you feel like this, how then must the Lord feel?' How many of His benefits are we benefactors of but yet fail to appreciate, sometimes we don't even notice all the little things He does, let alone acknowledge; needless to say my case seemed rather trivial afterwards.

I started thinking about all the things He does just for our benefit, how He holds it all together...the rain, the sun, morning dew, trees, flowers, birds chirping..the beauty of it all. Whao! He puts all that together. How I love Saturday mornings and in particular those ones where I get a chance to get up early and head to a park or am out in the quiet streets before most people are up and out..because then I can hear nature and the beauty of it all hits me; and I am not particularly outdoorsy (well, except on saturday mornings within the city or on holiday in the country :) but even I stop and notice how beautiful nature is.

I have a CD titled Songs of Angels I by Freddy Hayler (luv it, luv it & luv it), where he sings and describes a vision he had where he beheld the throne of God and he shares about how multiple commands go out from the LORD's mouth, how He speaks in multiple voices and the angels move responding to each simultaneous command...and you can just guess who the recipients of those commands and I, Rev 1:15b "and His voice as the sound of many waters"

Look around the takes love to "sit down", orchestrate, design, create & order the beauty around us that we see, creating something just for the comfort & pleasure of another...think about takes heart...those times that you have gone out of your way for someone else, what motivates you wouldn't it be love..some form of care or goodwill? Everyday we see the Lord's goodwill around us, everyday.

Everyday something new that is good happens on the earth because God has put His love into it happening and ordered it; the day He folds this earth it will also be because His love has gone into something more beautiful for you if you will receive it.

There is so much we often take for granted that didn't just happen, Somebody with a heart of kindness and love put their love into giving you water, food, rain, sun...the heart behind it is LOVE and even if that was not enough He became a man so that mercy will triumph over judgement concerning you.

Genesis 1 vs 26 -30 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.

Acts 14 vs 7: Yet He has not left himself without testimony: He has shown kindness by giving you rain from heaven and crops in their seasons; He provides you with plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy."

Matthew 5 vs 45b: for He makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and unjust

2 Corinthians 9 vs 12: This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God

Luke 17 vs 17-18: Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? 18 Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?”

How can we show our thanks - by giving Him praise, saying thank you Lord..ref text above, being appreciative from our hearts..if you notice the text above only the foreigner came back to say thanks, where were the children - the Israelite lepers that also received healing? Should we as children then take the grace of our Father for granted?

We can also show our gratitude by being a blessing to others like the Corinthian Church in chapter 9 vs can read the entire chapter and 8...they were meeting the needs of the Church in Jerusalem ..they performed a service of giving out of their substance to bless the Church in Jerusalem and that act of service & gift was regarded as a form thanks to the Lord.

Abel in Genesis 4 brought the fattest portion of his substance as an offering to God and that is something I really want to attain to...give God my best. The best of me O Lord, help me to give You the very best of me.

David said he would not give God something which cost Him nothing. 1 Samuel 24 vs 24: But the king replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the LORD my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.”

Father I offer my thanks to you...imperfect I am but I am loved perfectly...amazing love, how can this be?

Monday, 1 November 2010

Money, money, money.....

Greed is defined as excessive or rapacious desire especially for wealth and possessions. Christ warned us to watch out for it. In Luke 12 vs 15 the Lord says “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”

The Lord said to watch out because He knew that greed was something that could easily creep in, He said to watch out because He knew the fear of being poor could be so real to us...the worry about what we will eat, what we will wear, how we would plan for our future...that it could turn into an excessive desire for wealth and possessions, even a form of pride and a measure by which we validate & applaud ourselves.

Instead He taught us to be rich rather towards God warning that one who accumulates wealth and possessions without being rich towards God is not being wise but acting foolishly. Luke 12 vs 20-21

These are the things that God taught me about wealth and possessions in relation to my faith:
  • Christianity is not a means to financial gain and that anyone preaching gain as godliness I am to withdraw myself from such. (I Timothy 6: 5 NIV) "and constant friction between people of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain." (I Timothy 6 vs 5 KJV) "Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw yourself" 
  • That money is a tool, it can not be my heart beat, and that it is quite liberating when I come into this understanding. The contentment that follows my knowing this is pleasant & satisfying to my soul. 
  • That peace is one of the most precious gifts He has given me and I can enjoy that no matter how much or how little money I have in the bank, this is not a myth, it is real and attainable.
  • That the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil and if I were to persist in the love of money it will lead me to all kinds of damage & destruction.
 1 Timothy 6 vs 6-10 "But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs" 

Luke 12 Pls make sure you read the entire chapter, so that the message is fully meaningful to you

  • That I am to seek God first and whilst seeking His kingdom (His dominion in my life and that His glory fills the whole earth, that His gospel is preached) and His righteousness (His character is moulded in me), as a by-result of this He will prosper me but it was never for one day meant to be my focus or ambition because it can be a distraction & detractor (a detractor subtracts from you).
  •  That I need to be rich towards God, that that is the true measure of the balance sheet in heaven not the amount of riches I accumulate on earth.
  • That God is mindful of me, my needs and all of my life, nothing escapes His attention. No matter what is happening around me and to me, He is fully aware and cares. He tells me that I am WORTH MORE than two sparrows, that the tiny grains of my hair are all numbered (so if one of the million strands of my hair falls, heaven records it and says Lara lost strand no. 900017 today). If I loose my house heaven records it, if I loose my life heaven records it, when I lost my Dad heaven recorded it) God takes notice of everything that happens to me, therefore fear has lost it's validity. I am not random and He can never forget me, He has not forgotten the sparrows so then how can he forget me who is worth more to Him. God is so attentive to detail, that plant life receives His attention, the lilies of the field are so beautiful because God designed their beauty and clothed them with it. The same God of detail is my Father, my Papa, my Daddy who knows about my situation and is mindful of my life no matter how it looks or what I face. Jesus went further to say "Do not be afraid little flock..." Why did He use that term, a term of endearment, one that describes that He understands my human sheep, my children, my babies...don't be afraid, I know you are babies and there is a tendency to be fearful with you, to worry, but He says, cheer up, don't be afraid little one, I know you worry about how you will pay your bills, don't worry I know your needs, I will meet them, you are in my hands, I will come through over and over again, no matter how dire the situation seems, I am working out something in the big picture and it will all come together when the time is right. Regarding death - it is only your body, there is a greater death than that. Paul knew this & He was ready to be poured out, because of Paul & others, Rome is now a place where people go on a christian pilgrimage, the same Rome where Nero terrorised and persecuted Christians. In the times of great trial, I have seen another dimension of God. I have seen His manifold wisdom and I have known His great faithfulness, one new thing He has been teaching me is experiencing His great peace through tough times, sometimes I feel like jumping up and down with joy because of this discovery.
  • That God has a soft spot which I have come to discover: when you seek the right things, He likes to overcompensate; See 1 Kings 3 vs 10- 13 "The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. So God said to him, “Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be.  Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for—both wealth and honor—so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings."
  • That I should be generous to the poor Luke 11 vs 40 & Luke 12 vs 32
  • That I need to be prepared & ready for service and must keep my lamp burning because my master can come back at any time. Luke 12 vs 35 “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning." I must have extra oil in my lamp like the 5 wise virgins, I don't want to be found wanting because I only decided to go and buy oil just about when the bridegroom was on His way & it turned out to be too late. I remember when the word Maranatha was common amongst christians, where has that word gone now? Have we gotten carried away with the here and now? Have we started to act like the servant who because his master is delayed in coming starts to misbehave? See Luke 12 vs 45 Is there a marked difference in the things that we run after and the things that the world runs after, is it obvious that our goal is beyond the here and now and that we seek a country that is not of this world?  Hebrews 11 vs 13b-16 "...admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own.  If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.