I’m James! Many of you may know me as the brother of Jesus and the writer of the book of James in the Bible. I’m also one of the leaders at the Jerusalem Church. As I sit here listening to the cries of the lambs being taken to the temple for sacrifices, I’m reminded of my cousin’s (John the Baptist) words about Jesus as the “Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world”.
People often ask me what it was like growing up with Jesus as my older brother. I suppose it was as ‘normal’ as it gets! We grew up in the city of Nazareth and our childhood was quite Continue reading A Fantasy Letter→
We all carry labels. Labels that we sometimes give ourselves or given to us by family, friends, or our profession. But what does God have to say about all the things we are and we do? While some of us have learned the art of getting out of our messy places and shake off our labels, some continue in them.
Here is a great post by our guest blogger – Br. John Ashley
“Weeds are flowers, too, once you get to know them.” -Winnie-the-Pooh
The Cambridge Dictionary defines Relationship as ‘the way in which two things are connected.’ Simple; right? Yet, there seems to be nothing more complicated than this aspect of life. It only takes a quick trip to your nearest library or bookstore to view the mammoth number of books written on this single topic.
You may have heard statements like: “In this era where relationships are formed on the basis of ‘what can I get out of it syndrome’, potential usefulness becomes the mandate for associations.” Well, with such generalized assertions, we can conveniently put the whole blame of social deterioration on new-age kids and dwell in the talks of ‘those good old days’. However, the truth is, no human generation is different! In the name of practicality, we have been using and exploiting each other until the milk runs out and cow starts to bleed.
The Beatitudes – one of the most familiar portions in the Bible, eight precious teachings of Jesus that most Bible readers or church-goer can’t miss – they are mentioned in the book of Matthew Chapter 5. I remember memorizing these verses as a child without understanding the true treasure and beauty they carried. I always found the teachings quite controversial, as I saw it from the lens of what I had learned from people and things around me. Until recently, when I got the opportunity to study the Beatitudes.
The reason why so many of us do not understand these teachings is that Jesus is talking about an ‘up-side-down’ kingdom – a place that does not work on the principles of ‘happiness’ the world around us teaches. He teaches that we can remain blessed and happy always.
If I were to ask you to describe someone for me, say people at work, college, church or within the family, I’m sure at first instance, we come up with a list of people whom we remember for all the nice things they have done to us or for the kind of person they are. Subconsciously, there also lies another hidden category of people that we definitely do not want to remember or associate with. By remembering them we invoke memories that caused pain – Judgment. Hate. Negativity. Arrogance.
The list could go on. We all live in a world where such things are bound to exist. Most of us at one point or the other are -Hurt. Betrayed. Manipulated. Misunderstood. Backstabbed. Continue reading The Invincible Struggle→
Don’t we all make it a point to pray for our children? As a mother, I do! I pray for my children every day without fail. While this seems like the ‘normal’ thing to do, the quality of our prayers often surrounds our concern for our children’s safety, studies, spiritual growth, health, exams, future, etc. And sometimes very generic such as ‘Lord, bless my children’.
Certain conversations leave a deep impact on our minds. Often, children are our biggest tutors of life. They teach us so much about life, faith and values through their innocent acts or talks. This is one such simple conversation with my 2-year-old, which made me pause and reflect on the words he spoke to me.
My husband had just given him a shower and I was getting him dressed. As I was buttoning up his shirt, he said: “Mummy, David is cute”. (Don’t you love it when kids refer to themselves in the third person!)
“My God is so big
So strong and so mighty
There’s nothing my God cannot do”
You all remember this song? Yeah…?
Recently at Sunday school, Children sang this over and over again… I watched them sing with actions, from the youngest to the oldest, as loud as they could, as energetic as they could. The teens, as usual, were teasing each other and having fun as probably they felt they were made to sing nursery songs.
How do we react when we receive certain prophecies from God, that would change our life positively? We often react with joy and welcome such promises with a ‘Yes and Amen’!
One would think the path to such promises would be quite short and easy. However, I’ve learned recently that God likes to test our submission to His will before He fulfills His plans for us.
Everybody knows Mary as the mother of Jesus but not many remember her as the little girl (probably in her teens), gleaming with excitement and dreaming of her life with her future husband Joseph. It was at this point, Continue reading The Path to Promise→
“All the other kids do it so why can’t I?” – Nathan said, as I questioned him on something he did. He tries to defend saying “Mummy, because he did that to me”, with all the expressions and pointing fingers at the rest of the kids. “It was never his fault”! Well, that’s what he wants me to think of him. How many of you have heard this elusive statement from kids when we ask them why they did certain things?