Suffer Little Children

But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.

(Luke 18: 16)

Children need to be taught about Jesus. Churches are in serious decline because the parents are abdicating their responsibilities to ensure that their children go to Sunday School and learn about our Heavenly Father.

As a child, my mother used to read Bible Stories to me when I was in bed and before I went to sleep. How many parents do that nowadays?

Thirty years or so ago many churches had thriving Sunday Schools but somehow they must have failed abysmally to capture the interest and imagination of the children who went to Sunday School because these children neglected to tell their own children about the miracles of Jesus.

And if you go back in time to the 1800s, you will read in the newspaper archives that most churches were so full every Sunday that they could hardly accommodate everyone who wanted to attend!

Children are – or, at least, should be – the lifeblood of all churches but it is with great regret that I have to say that very few churches – here in the UK, anyway – have responsible adult members who encourage their children to go to Sunday School every week.

Jesus loved children – do you love your children and grandchildren enough to make sure that they read their Bible and go to Church every Sunday?

Praise be the Lord. Hallelujah

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With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

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Good Friday

Jesus fell with his face to the ground and prayed:-
 
“My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will but as you will.”
 
(Matthew 26: 39)
 
And in John 19: 28-30 we read:-
 
28 After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.
 
29 Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.
 
30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.
 
Thank you, dear Jesus, for having the courage and strength to suffer all the pain and humiliation of being crucified upon the Cross at Calvary so that all our sins may be forgiven and so that we may enjoy eternal life in your Kingdom.
 
Amen
Good Friday
With many peaceful blessings
Geoffrey

The Dusty Room

They came unexpectedly. Two of them following a man with a jar – he pointed me out, and then disappeared as the others hurried towards me. I recognised them immediately; they were followers of Him, the teacher.

We had spoken before, this teacher and I, He spoke wisely and seemed somehow to be able to look inside my very soul.

We had discussed money, something that I was very fond of, but He seemed to think that I should give more away, help the local poor, reach out to those in need around me. I was a little taken aback; after all, who was this man to tell me what I should do with my own money?

But He sowed a seed, and it really got me thinking. It was as if He knew it would, as if He even knew the outcome of my thinking.

Then of course it happened, his two disciples arrived and asked for my upper room so that they and the teacher could share the Passover together.

Here was my chance, to show Him that I had been thinking about our conversation. I welcomed the party and told them I would prepare it for them.

They went back to give Jesus the news and I went straight to the room that had not been used for a while and needed a good clean. I spent the afternoon cleaning everywhere, making it ready to receive Him.

It was not too long before they showed up. Everyone looked hot and bothered, He smiled at me as I had said nothing about charging Him for the use of the room. He knew I was beginning to change.

He asked me for a bowl of water, which I provided and then to everyone’s amazement He bent down and washed his disciples’ feet. I have never seen a teacher, a leader do that before. Who was this man who turned the norm on its head and changed everything from the inside out?

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

For Jesus It Was A Dangerous Day!

In the Shadows of Victory you are invited to ride the roller-coaster of Holy Week.

We now begin the journey, remembering that already we stand with Jesus Christ our Saviour in the shadow of the cross, remembering that for him, it was a very dangerous day.

Jesus knew exactly what he was doing mounting the donkey at Bethpage, as this was where the priests had calculated the city limits. For Jesus to mount here was a statement that spoke volumes to all that were there. It was, in effect, as if He was shouting from the rooftops that He was the Messiah.

Now, position yourself at the side of the road, having first run and chopped down a palm branch that you are waving frantically.

Picture if you can the Roman army standing there, thousands of them, making it very clear that you are part of an occupied people. Look up at the temple on the hill, and look beyond it. There overshadowing the holy place is the fist shaped Roman fortress. Built purposely taller than the temple just to remind you who was in charge.

Listen to the crowd hailing him as their King. But He does not come on a war horse, only a humble donkey. And He does not come with swords and clubs; He is armed only with God’s words of peace and love.

Wave your branches, as they are the national symbol of your people. Wave them at the coming Messiah, showing your defiance to the Romans, believing that this Jesus would send them packing once and for all.

Jesus knew that for Him, it was a very dangerous day.

Picture the children laughing and playing around your feet. In your fear, you push them forward. Somehow this fear is always lurking beneath your joy; your fear of the Roman soldiers and the power they hold over you.

The children – they are young, surely these soldiers wouldn’t launch an attack against them, no matter how unruly the crowd become. Push them forward, put them between you and the soldiers, not because you do not love your children, but because you fear for your own safety.

Jesus knew that for Him, it was a very dangerous day.

Sing your hosannas, not just a song of happiness, but also a song of rebellion, a song that speaks of freedom, and of victory over your enemies. Stand tall in the face of those who persecute you. Hold firm, ready to take up arms and fight, ready to rally around this new king and take back, by force if you have to, your land, and your home.

Jesus knew that for Him, it was a very dangerous day.

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Struggles for Survival Without Clean Water!

Not too long ago, there was a village characterized by a desperate struggle for survival. People lived in poverty and at risk of disease. But there was an even more pressing problem: In the hot, dry desert, there were not enough water sources to go around. The villagers depended on dirty ponds and rivers. Sometimes, it was difficult to find water at all.

Pastor Dalapathi ministered in this village and was deeply concerned about the people’s situation. While he worked hard to share Christ’s love with the people, it was difficult to break through, and he could see they desperately needed clean water.

By God’s grace, Pastor Dalapathi and the believers did not lose hope. Instead, they prayed and something changed: God provided a Jesus Well for their village. It was an amazing answer to prayer. Suddenly, the villagers had clean, safe water ready and accessible. But this gift had a far greater impact.

“The non-believers of the village were astonished by the good work that has been done by the church,” said one field report.

And this tangible act of love and prayer warmed all their hearts to learning more.

Never ever under-estimate the immense Power of Prayer. There is no limit to the abundance which our Father God will bestow upon you and those of whom you are praying.

Praise be the Lord. Hallelujah.

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey

Of Mice and Committees

A group of mice once formed a committee to consider the menace of the local cat.

After a good deal of discussion which led nowhere, one of the mice announced that he had a positive suggestion to make which he thought would solve the problem.

If a bell were to be hung around the cat’s neck, the mice would be given warning of his approach and would have time to run away to safety.

Amid squeaks of approval he formally put the resolution that such a bell should be secured and placed around the cat’s neck. The resolution was enthusiastically seconded and passed unanimously.

All the mice were delighted that the matter had been settled so satisfactorily and the chairman was about to close the meeting when a very old mouse who had appeared to sleep throughout the proceedings opened one eye, twitched a whisker and asked, “But who is going to change the bell?”

Then there was silence whilst the mice looked in dismay at one another. Everyone had taken it for granted that someone else would hang the bell around the cat’s neck!

The timidity of the mice is understandable, but are committees of human beings any better?

What is a committee? Well, it ought to be a group of people who are committed to not only talking but also to doing. Those who do not want to commit themselves should not volunteer to be on committees.

But, so very often, committees end where they began – doing nothing but talking – with only a vague hope that someone else is going to do something.

One school of thought tends to suggest that committees are created not actually to get things done but to evade – or, at least, postpone – some drastic action from which we shrink.

Jesus was always stressing that action is the test of our faith.

It is doing the will of our Heavenly Father that is the badge of citizenship of the Kingdom of God.

As Jesus says, “Blessed are they who hear the word of God and do it”. (Luke 11: 28)

With many peaceful blessings

Geoffrey