Monday, November 26, 2012

Live out of the box...

Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we've put it in an impossible situation.
~ Margaret Mead

The first time I saw this quote, I just had to agree with her. It is quite an unfortunate place (or shall I say "box") we have put/found ourselves in.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

B2B


Abraham's blessings are mine
Abraham's blessings are mine
I am blessed in the morning,
In the noon and the night time
Abraham's blessings are mine 

Another song which is more interactive is:

My hands are filled (Echo)
With the blessings of the Lord (Echo)
My hands are filled (Echo)
With the blessings of the Lord (Echo)
Everyone (or Anyone) I touch (Echo) 
Surely must be blessed (Echo)
My hands are filled (Echo)
With the blessings of the Lord (Echo)

Do you know either or both of those songs? They are rather old, popular, prophetic and well-loved songs. I just wonder how many people think about or even realize what the songs really mean. The reason why I wonder is because I know that a lot of people enjoy partaking in "rewards" without considering the requirements let alone the related responsibilities.

Let's take some time to look at the "genesis" of Abraham's blessings (excuse the pun).

Genesis 12: 1-3 The Lord said to Abram: Leave your country, your family, and your relatives and go to the land that I will show you. I will bless you and make your descendants into a great nation. You will become famous and be a blessing to others. I will bless anyone who blesses you, but I will put a curse on anyone who puts a curse on you. Everyone on earth will be blessed because of you. (Contemporary English Version)

I can imagine Abraham saying "Amen" after each phrase - like we do these days. I just wonder whether he hesitated after the last statement. The bottom line of this promise is that God's purpose for blessing Abraham was for a purpose -so he'd be a blessing to others. Likewise, everytime we sing either of those songs or other similar themed songs or even pray for a blessing, we must realize that that reward comes with a responsibility. God does not expect us to live like the "Dead sea" that only receives and never gives.

The other way of looking at it is if you are not a blessing to others then you are not fulfilling your purpose on earth and that would sadden God that He has blessed you. God forbid! Some of us are quick to sing or even recite Bible verses but don't take the next step to be a blessing.You have to be true to your words...I mean say (or sing) what you mean and mean what you say/sing. Action is the only proof of belief in the words we speak (or sing).

I really like the way Acts 20:35 puts the related responsibility in context - read it with me:
"And I have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus:
‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’"
(NLT)

While it's great to receive, giving is even better (& greater). We are all B2B - blessed to bless. In fact, there is a "curse" upon those who don't do that - see what Proverbs 11: 24-25 says: "The world of the generous gets larger and larger; the world of the stingy gets smaller and smaller. The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed; those who help others are helped." So I guess it's all up to you - not just to sing the songs but actually live by the lyrics.

As the Americans, celebrate their Thanksgiving today - hopefully giving God thanks for all His blessings and mercies...I can't help but wonder how many people around you will give God thanks for blessing them with and through you. It's worth thinking about...you're B2B!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

What we must give (leave) to our children...

As we celebrate the Universal Children's Day*, ask yourself:
"What am I giving to (or even leaving to) my child(ren)?

I found 2 interesting quotes that may seem at odds with a particular Bible verse which follows (depending on the version/interpretation you have). As we dig into it, you'll see that they are aligned.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

2 generations later...

You must have heard about Caleb, Hur and Bezalel - did you know that they were related?* Well, they were:

Saturday, November 10, 2012

You never know...

...when it will snow.

Anyone living (or who has ever lived) in Calgary would have come to the realization that:
"Indeed, you never know when it will snow!"

The temperature can move from +20 degrees Celsius to -15 degrees Celsius over a weekend or even in a day. The meterologists are also surprised despite their best predictions.

Just as unpredictable the weather can be, so it is with the length of our lives.  A popular saying goes: "The only certainity in life is the uncertainty of life." The good thing about this life of uncertainity, or uncertainity of life, is that we can make decisions that will limit the level of uncertainity we live in - both here and hereafter. As much as dying is a turning point in so many people's lives, more important than dying, is where the person will "live" forever.

Another popular saying about certainity which no one can debate is: "The only things that are certain are death and taxes."  Since this is true, we should take the time to "plan" our death (especially our destination after it) carefully as we plan our taxes. In "Death Planning," your main concern should be your destination and there are only 2 choices: Heaven or Hell.

Going to Heaven is as simple as ABC:
Accept Jesus as your Lord & Saviour
Believe and live by His Word everyday
Cultivate a personal relationship with Him
The best part about all this is, like Rev Victor Adeyemi said,
"If at the end of time, we find out that there's no Heaven to gain and no Hell to lose, it would still have been well worth it to live a righteous life."

Indeed, living a righteous life has both tangible and intangible earthly and eternal value. Adding these types of value to your life is something only you can do for yourself.
Accepting Jesus as your Lord & Saviour is the best thing you can ever do for yourself...
I know because it's the best thing I ever did for myself decades ago. Join the winning team!