Friday, October 31, 2014

Where our restless Hearts will be

“There remains therefore a rest for the people of God" - Hebrews 4:5''

  Billy Graham says, we are the most entertained generation in history.  Television sets pull in hundreds of channels; professional sports teams and pop music groups take in (and spend) billions of dollars; million s of people own second and third homes for vacations; our children are upset if they don't get the latest computer games for Christmas.

I believe this frantic search for entertainment is a symptom of something deeper.  Some have suggested we are the most bored generation in history--and perhaps they are right.  Down inside is an empty place in our hearts--a restlessness, a search for inner peace and tranquility--that will not go away.  The irony is, the more we try to satisfy it, the less content we become.

     I know little about nuclear fission or uranium and other elements used in making nuclear explosives.  Yet I believe in the atomic bomb, and so do you.  But how can we believe that it exists, if we don’t understand it or have any scientific knowledge about the way it works?

     The answer is obvious.  Others understand nuclear fission even if we don’t, and other have seen what happens when a nuclear reaction takes place, even if we haven’t.  We read what they say, and we accept it as the evidence of reliable witnesses.

    I spend much of my time pursuing the pages of a book---the Bible.  In it I discover that centuries ago God acted and spoke, and reliable witnesses have written it down.  God even guided them as they wrote, so that now i read the very words of God Himself.

In the same way, Christians don't fail to live as they should because they are in the world; they fail because the world has gotten into them.  We don't fail to produce the fruit of the Holy Spirit because we live in a sea of corruption; we fail because the sea of corruption has gotten into us.

    It can happen almost without our realizing it.  At one time we were dedicated to Christ, surrendered to the will of God.But little by little the chilling waters of the world crept in.  We became preoccupied with the things of this world rather than the things of Christ.

Only Christ can fill that empty space in our hearts, and He will as we open our lives to Him.  But God's Word also points us to the future--to Heaven, where our restless hearts will be at peace.  "There remains, therefore, a rest for the people of God. 


Raj Kosaraju

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Best ways to overcome adversity

Suffering is the common lot of the human race.  We see pictures on television of people ravaged by war or famine, and our hearts are touched (as they should be).  But all around you are people who suffer in others ways: loneliness, fear, rejection, disability, grief, poverty, discrimination, addiction, or a multitude of problems.

But God has compassion on us--He suffers with us.  He knows what we are going through, and He cares.  The greatest act of compassion in the history of the human race was the Cross, for there Christ suffered for us. He endured sin's penalty so we would not have to endure it ourselves.

Now He calls us to have compassion on others, for His sake--suffer with them, and to point them to the One who suffered for them.  The Bible says, "Be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble" (I Peter 3:8) - Billy Graham

“Neither death nor life,….nor things present not things to come,….shall be able to separate us from the love of God” – Romans 8:38-39

     There are two ways to respond to adversity; discouragement or trust.

     The problem with giving in to discouragement is that it only makes things worse, for with it may come bitterness, anger, jealousy, revenge, and so forth.  We may even try to escape through drugs or alcohol.  But do any of these solve the problem? No!

     God has a better way---the way of trust.  Sometimes He may show us that we were in the wrong.  When that is the case, we need to confess it, repent, and seek His forgiveness.  Sometimes, however, we can only accept what is happening and ask God to help us endure it and triumph over it.

     One of the best ways to overcome adversity, I've found, is to praise God right in the middle of the turmoil.  Turning to God’s Word will also encourage us, many of the Psalms, for example, were written in the midst of suffering and adversity.  Follow the Psalmist’s example. “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits” (Psalm 103:2) – Billy Graham


Raj Kosaraju