Thicker than Blood

Thicker than Blood

“Obedience is thicker than blood.” (Matthew 12:50 MSG)

Obedience.

A word so used in the Bible that it appeared 150 times, and not a single of the 69 books of the Bible was without it. A common word, but with no doubt, and important one. Obedience gave way to the birth of the nation of Israel (Abraham); obedience bought salvation to Israelites against the Egyptians (Moses); obedience bought salvation to the whole world (Jesus). Yet as great as the rewards of it is, so is the price for acts against it. It was disobedience that brought the fall of mankind (Adam); it caused the favor of God to leave (King Saul); it was what lead to the division of the Kingdom of Israel (King Solomon); and it was what caused the nation to be exiled to foreign lands (Israelites in the time of the prophets).  

The simple act is not without a heavy price. One simple disobedience could lead to great consequences that affect not only the person involved but also the generations before him. It’s something that could bring about the birth of a nation, otherwise the fall of mankind. Obedience results in blessings and favor- even long after one is dead, like the life of King David.

Matthew 12:50

“Whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”

Perhaps the greatest reward of obedience is the acceptance in the family of God. Jesus himself had declared that only those who willingly obey without any reservations are those qualified to be called His family. Unity in a family is important in a harmonious and healthy relationship among the members. Most disagreements, particularly in the parent – child relationship, stems from disobedience, mostly in the part of the children. Those who maintain a good relationship with the other members through obedience tend to be more accepted rather than the black sheep.

God has designed this kind of family so as to give us an example on how things work out for Him too. If a harmonious relationship could be attained by obedience to parents, then the same goes for God too. Just calling Him “Father” does not entitle us the right to be His children, but accepting Him and following what He wills to do does. We cannot claim to have Him as our Father if we do not have respect and fear enough to do His will. A true belonging in the family of Christ enables us to choose obedience above all else, even if the world and circumstances elects us not to.

Obedience should be a hundred percent, and not to be delayed. Partial and delayed obedience is an obvious disobedience. So if we wanted to follow Christ and claim God as our “Father”, remember to keep an obedient heart – one that would give a hundred percent of it all.

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Similarity in Uniqueness

Similarity in Uniqueness

Just like how one body has many parts, so it is for the body of Christ (with pun intended):-D

It’s of a universal truth that no one person is exactly the same. We are all unique in our own way, but guess what? These differences that makes us the literal meaning of “individuals” are important in building the church. We may be of different ages, of different spiritual birthdays, of different birthplaces but rest assured, we all have our place in the family of Christ. It’s our home – a place where we belong.

And just as a family’s members have their own roles to fulfill in the house, so it is the same for the Church. We are all familiar with the common types of workers that could be found inside the walls of the church: there are pastors, teachers, apostles, prophets. And there are singers, musicians, intercessors, ushers. It’s of God’s plan to put different people under a single body. We are not all pastors (who will be left to follow?); not all musicians (who would lead the congregation in singing?); not all evangelists (who would be left inside the church to train disciples?)

Different talents and abilities and that what makes us important. There are people who are gifted in visual arts, or music, or leadership, or speaking. And there are even the spiritual gifts like faith, wisdom, prophecy, discernment.

Ephesians 2:22 MSG

“We see it taking shape day after day—a holy temple built by God, all of us built into it, a temple in which God is quite at home.”

God designed us all unique and different – with no exact copy in the entire universe, not in the past, in the present or in the future. But He did not design us this way just for the sake of it. He had intended it to be used in completing the building He longs to build with His children. It’s a building where Christ is the head, and we are the body – off to do what the head wills.

So for whatever gifts and talents you have, let it not go to waste – use it. Train, mentor, sing, dance, pray, paint, write, speak…lead.

Go help God in building a place for His Spirit to live.  

The Sharpest Blade or the Best Medicine

The Sharpest Blade or the Best Medicine

(Reflection for January 9; late upload)

Whether we know it or not, whatever we speak comes to pass.

Words can either make or break a person. We all know that because we’ve had our fair share of either encouraging or degrading words – and the worst or best part is they come mostly from the people closest to us.

All around us is negativity – from the media, to our school or workplace, and even in our homes. The world is so negative it seems as though there’s nothing good left to see or speak of. The sad thing is this negativity takes part in shaping the personality of a person – in the way it is handled or taught to a child.

Since the world is a tad too negative already, won’t it be a refreshing change if we would go against the flow? So here’s a challenge: Everyday we meet and talk to people – in office, or school, or church, or home.  Why not try to spend a day, a week, a month, with nothing but encouraging words to say? No complaints, no negative remarks against others (even if we think they deserve it). Only thanksgiving, positive words and encouragements.

See the difference it makes, not only in our own lives, but more so in other people. =)

Proverbs 16:24 NIV

“Pleasant words are a honeycomb: sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.”

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