Wednesday, December 31, 2014


Change is one thing we can be sure of in this life. Our relationships change as we move to new places. Even the cells in our bodies are always in the process of change. When cells wear out, most are replaced by new ones. This is especially noticeable with our skin—we shed & regrow outer skin cells about every 27 days.

Yes, change is the one certainty in our world. Henry Lyte's melancholy line in his hymn "Abide With Me" is true: "Change and decay in all around I see." But the hymn immediately adds, "O Thou who changest not, abide with me!"

By faith in Jesus Christ, we can have a relationship with the unchanging God, who says of Himself in Malachi 3:6, "I am the Lord, I do not change." Hebrews 13:8 adds this reassuring testimony: "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever."

He is our firm foundation, who can give us confidence & security in this changing world. To face life's changes, look to the unchanging God. (

It seems, God once said to the Bible Teacher, Bob Mumford, “You and I are incompatible and I do not change.”

Jer 26:13 (GNB): “You must change the way you are living and the things you are doing, and must obey the LORD your God. If you do, he will change his mind about the destruction that he said he would bring on you.”

In the New Year 2015, I hope, wish & pray that you may change your focus, commitments & actions for a more spiritually fruitful year ahead. Have a blessed New Year.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Ignace Jan Padereswski, the famous Polish pianist & statesman, was once scheduled to perform at a great concert hall in America.

Present in the audience that evening was a woman who had brought her nine-year-old son, hoping that he would be encouraged to practice the piano if he could just hear the great Padereski at the keyboard.

Weary waiting for the concert to begin & being there against his wishes anyway - the lad squirmed restlessly in his seat. Then, as his mother turned to talk with friends, the boy slipped out of his seat & down the aisle, strangely drawn by the ebony concert grand sitting majestic & alone at the centre of the huge stage. He sat down on the tufted leather stool, placed his small hands on the black & white keys, & began to play "Chop Sticks."

Suddenly the crowd hushed & hundreds of frowning faces turned in his direction. Irritated & embarrassed, some began to shout: "Hey, get that boy away from there!" "Where's his mother?" "Somebody stop him!"

Backstage, Paderewski heard the uproar & the sound of the simple tune. When he saw what was happening, he hurried onto the stage. Without a word to the audience, he walked up behind the lad, reached his arms around either side of him & began to improvise a countermelody. As the two made music together, the master pianist kept whispering in the boy's ear: "keep going. Don't quit, son. Keep on playing … don't stop … don't quit."

So it is with us. We hammer away at life & sometimes it seems about as significant as "Chop Sticks." Then, about the time we are ready to give up, along come the Master, who leans over & whispers: "Don't quit. Keep going," as He provides His finishing touch of grace, love & joy at just the right moment.

Are you one of those weary pilgrims? Is the road getting long? Is hope wearing a little thin?

Don't quit. Keep on. Finish the course.

Listen to the Master whispering: “God is the one who began this good work in you, and I am certain that he won't stop before it is complete on the day that Christ Jesus returns.” (Phil. 1:6 CEV) - Charles Swindoll (

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Sacrifices That Please God

A man touring a rural area of the Far East saw a boy pulling a crude plow while an old man held the handles and guided it through the rice paddy. The visitor commented, "I suppose they are poor."

"Yes," said his guide. "When their church was built, they wanted to give something to help but they had no money. So they sold their only ox. This spring they are pulling the plow themselves." The tourist was deeply challenged by their sacrificial gift.

God puts no merit in any attempts to earn His favor or call attention to oneself. But He delights in deeds that spring from faith that works through love. He is pleased when we do good, and share with others.

Some spiritual sacrifices will be costly. But what is gained - His praise - is always greater than what is given up. (

Heb 13:16 (ISV): “Do not neglect to do good and to be generous, for God is pleased with such sacrifices.”

Friday, December 26, 2014

JESUS means a LOT to you or is EVERYTHING?

There was a missionary in South-East Asia, who was captured by some guerillas & freedom fighters & they were Marxists. He actually walked with them for three weeks through the jungles. And he had quite a good relationship with group of freedom fighters, & they talked about Marxism & they talked about Jesus & they went backwards & forwards.

When the missionary was released - the leader of the freedom fighters said something very interesting: he said "I see that your message about Jesus is more powerful than ours. But we will win, because Jesus means a lot to you, but the revolution means everything to us."

And the question I keep asking myself is: Does Jesus mean a lot to us or is everything? Is Jesus my most important hobby or is this business of life & death. (Ian Powell: "Learning the game by watching others play”)

Mat 13:44 CEV): ‘The kingdom of heaven is like what happens when someone finds treasure hidden in a field and buries it again. A person like that is happy and goes and sells everything in order to buy that field.”

Thursday, December 25, 2014


“If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent us an educator;

If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist;

If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist;

If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer;

But our greatest need was forgiveness, so God sent us a Savior.” - Max Lucado.

“The cross is the greatest example of humility and devotion in the universe. Jesus put your needs ahead of His own. He considered you more valuable than Himself.” - Chip Ingram.

Indeed God loves us enough to meet all our needs as per His plan and He is wise enough not to give us those things we think we need but He doesn’t think so.

“And my God will fully supply your every need according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” – Paul (Php 4:19 ISV).

“God has supplied all my needs and has not failed me once.” - Watchman Nee.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Materialism & the Meaning of Christmas

A television interviewer was walking streets of Tokyo at Christmas time.

Much as in America, Christmas shopping is a big commercial success in Japan.

The interviewer stopped one young woman on the sidewalk, and
asked, "What is the meaning of Christmas?"

Laughing, she responded, "I don't know. Is that the day that Jesus died?"

There is some truth in her answer.   (Donald Deffner; Seasonal Illustrations)

“How many observe Christ's birthday! How few, His precepts! O! 'tis
easier to keep holidays than commandments.” - Benjamin Franklin.

John 1:11-12 (KJV): “He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.”

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


“I do not believe that one can earnestly seek and find the priceless treasure of God's call without a devout prayer life. That is where God speaks.

The purpose of prayer and of God's call in your life is not to make you number one in the world's eyes, but to make him number one in your life.

We must be willing to be outshone while shining for God. We hear very little about being smaller in our own self-estimate.” - Ravi Zacharias.

“Prayer is not over-coming God’s reluctance but laying hold of His willingness.” - Martin Luther.

“The secret of praying is praying in secret.” - Leonard Ravenhill.

John 16:24 (ISV): “So far you haven't asked for anything in my name. Keep asking and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete."

Monday, December 15, 2014


Early in his ministry, when he was pastor of the Congregational Church at Rugeley, Campbell Morgan studied hard and preached often.

He was discovering and developing the gift of Bible exposition that later made him the prince of expositors. His preaching made him popular.

One evening, as he sat in his study, he felt God saying to him, "What are you going to be, a preacher or My messenger?"

As Morgan pondered the question, he realized that his desire to become a "great preacher" was hindering his work. For several hours Morgan sat there struggling with God's call and human ambition.

Finally he said, "Thy messenger, my Master - Thine!"

He took the precious outlines of his sermons, messages that he was proud of, and laid them in the fireplace where they burned to ashes. That was when the victory was won.

As the outlines were burning, Morgan prayed: "If Thou wilt give me Thy words to speak, I will utter them from this day forward, adding nothing to them, taking naught away. Thine whole counsel I will declare, so help me God!"  (Wycliffe Handbook of Preaching & Preachers - W. Wiersby)

"Whatever I say to you in the dark, you must tell in the light. And you must announce from the housetops whatever I have whispered to you." - Jesus (Mat 10:27 CEV)

Sunday, December 14, 2014


In his book ‘Facing Loneliness’, J. Oswald Sanders writes, "The round of pleasure or the amassing of wealth are but vain attempts to escape from the persistent ache. The millionaire is usually a lonely man & the comedian is often more unhappy than his audience."

Sanders goes on to emphasize that being successful often fails to produce satisfaction. Then he refers to Henry Martyn, a distinguished scholar, as an example of what he is talking about.

Martyn, a Cambridge University student, was honored at only 20 years of age for his achievements in mathematics. In fact, he was given the highest recognition possible in that field. And yet he felt emptiness inside. He said that instead of finding fulfillment in his achievements, he had "only grasped a shadow."

After evaluating his life's goals, Martyn sailed to India as a missionary at the age of 24. When he arrived, he prayed, "Lord, let me burn out for You." In the next 7 years that preceded his death, he translated the New Testament into three difficult Eastern languages (Urdu, Persian & Judaeo-Persic). These notable achievements were certainly not passing "shadows."

Mat 5:6 (GNB): "Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires; God will satisfy them fully!"

Friday, December 12, 2014


In November, 1975, 75 convicts started digging a secret tunnel designed to bring them up at the other side of the wall of Saltillo Prison in northern Mexico.

On April 18, 1976, guided by pure genius, they tunneled up into the nearby courtroom in which many of them had been sentenced. The surprised judges returned all 75 to jail. (Campus Life)

“Man can certainly flee from God but he cannot escape him. He can certainly hate God and be hateful to God, but he cannot change into its opposite the eternal love of God which triumphs even in his hate.” - Karl Barth.

Psa 139:7 (GNB): “Where could I go to escape from you? Where could I get away from your presence?”

Heb 2:3 (CEV): “So if we refuse this great way of being saved, how can we hope to escape?”

Jesus told him, "I am the way, the truth and the life: no one comes to the Father except through me." (Jn14:6)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014


An honest farmer was asked to dine with a gentleman & there asked a blessing at table as he was accustomed to do at home.

His host said jeeringly, "That is old-fashioned; it is not customary nowadays for well-educated people to pray at table."

The farmer answered that with him it was customary, but that some of his household never prayed over their food.

"Ah, then," said the gentleman, "They are sensible & enlightened. Who are they?"

The farmer answered, "They are my pigs." - Christian Herald.

“The whole life of a Christian should be nothing but praises & thanks to God; we should neither eat nor sleep, but eat to God & sleep to God & work to God & talk to God, do all to His glory & praise.” - Richard Sibbes.

Psa 150:6 (JPS): “Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Hallelujah.”

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


Once upon a time a farmer owned an old mule that tripped & fell into the farmer's well. The farmer heard the mule 'braying' & was unable to figure out how to bring up the old animal.

It grieved him that he could not pull the animal out - he'd been a good worker around the farm & though the farmer sympathized with the mule, he called his neighbors together & told them what had happened...& had them help haul dirt to bury the old mule in the well & quietly put him out of his misery.

At first, the old mule was puzzled, but as the farmer & his neighbors continued shoveling & the dirt hit his back, he had a thought. He ought to shake off the dirt & step up. And he did just that. "Shake it off & step up...shake it off & step up...shake it off & step up!"

Even though he took painful blows of dirt & fought panic, he just kept right on SHAKING IT OFF & STEPPING UP! It wasn't long before the old mule, stepped up & over the lip of that well. What could have buried him, actually blessed him...all because of the manner in which he handled his adversity. (

Jas 1:2-4 (GNB) My friends, consider yourselves fortunate when all kinds of trials come your way, for you know that when your faith succeeds in facing such trials, the result is the ability to endure. Make sure that your endurance carries you all the way without failing, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Interview with Billy Graham's Daughter

The interview took place on CBS's "The Early Show" on the Thursday morning after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

Jane Clayson conducted the interview with Anne Graham Lotz, a daughter of the Rev. Billy Graham.

According to the transcript of the broadcast, Clayson asked, "I've heard people say, those who are religious, those who are not, if God is good, how could God let this happen? To that, you say?"

Lotz replied, "I say God is also angry when He sees something like this. I would say also for several years now Americans in a sense have shaken their fist at God & said, God, we want you out of our schools, our government, our business, we want you out of our marketplace.

And God, who is a gentleman, has just quietly backed out of our national & political life, our public life, removing His hand of blessing & protection.

We need to turn to God first of all & say, God, we're sorry we have treated you this way & we invite you now to come into our national life. We put our trust in you.

We have ‘In God we trust’ on our coins, we need to practice it." (

God said: “If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” (2Ch 7:14 ASV)

Friday, November 21, 2014

WHAT GOD DOES - According To An Eight-Year Old

It was written by an 8-year-old named Danny Dutton, who lives in Chula Vista, CA. USA. He wrote it for his third grade homework assignment, to 'Explain God.' I wonder if any of us could have done so well.

Explanation of God:

'One of God's main jobs is making people. He makes them to replace the ones that die, so there will be enough people to take care of things on earth. He doesn't make grownups, just babies. I think because they are smaller and easier to make. That way he doesn't have to take up his valuable time teaching them to talk and walk. He can just leave that to mothers and fathers.'

'God sees everything and hears everything and is everywhere which keeps Him pretty busy. So you shouldn't go wasting his time by going over your mom and dad's head asking for something they said you couldn't have.'

'Atheists are people who don't believe in God. I don't think there are any in Chula Vista. At least there aren't any who come to our church.'

'Jesus is God's Son. He used to do all the hard work, like walking on water and performing miracles and trying to teach the people who didn't want to learn about God. They finally got tired of him preaching to them and they crucified him. But he was good and kind, like his father, and he told his father that they didn't know what they were doing and to forgive them and God said O.K.'

'His dad (God) appreciated everything that he had done and all his hard work on earth so he told him he didn't have to go out on the road anymore. He could stay in heaven. So he did.’

'You should always go to church on Sunday because it makes God happy, and if there's anybody you want to make happy, it's God!’

‘Don't skip church to do something you think will be more fun like going to the beach. This is wrong. And besides, the sun doesn't come out at the beach until noon anyway.'

'If you don't believe in God, besides being an atheist, you will be very lonely, because your parents can't go everywhere with you, like to camp, but God can. It is good to know He's around you when you're scared, in the dark or when you can't swim and you get thrown into real deep water by big kids.'

'But... you shouldn't just always think of what God can do for you. I figure God put me here and he can take me back anytime he pleases. And that’s why I believe in God.'

(Contributed by Pastor Betty Wong) (

“Verily I say unto you, whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.” – Jesus Christ (Mar 10:15).

Danny Dutton

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


The date, July 20, 1969, will forever be known as the day the USA put the first man on the moon. What most people do not know is the date also marks when Edwin Buzz Aldrin celebrated the first & only Lord’s Supper on the moon, a fact the U.S. government refused to make public at the time.

Inside the lunar module, just hours before stepping onto the moon for the first time, Aldrin radioed Houston Space Center Mission Control. He asked for a few moments of silence “to invite each person listening in, wherever & whomever they may be, to pause for a moment & contemplate the events of the past few hours, & to GIVE THANKS in his or her own way.”

(At that point, NASA had decided to blackout the broadcast of the communion service.)

In that moment of silence that followed, Aldrin silently read a passage from the book of John (15:5 RSV) that he had written out on a 3×5 card: “I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me, & I in him, will bear much fruit; for you can do nothing without me.”

Then he took out the miniature chalice & bread & wine from his personal allowance pouch. “I poured the wine into the chalice our church had given me,” he told Guideposts magazine in 1970.

“In the one-sixth gravity of the moon the wine curled slowly & gracefully up the side of the cup. It was interesting to think that the very first liquid ever poured on the moon, & the first food eaten there, were communion elements.”

Neil Armstrong, the other astronaut onboard, did not participate.

(Elizabeth Dias, writer-reporter in TIME's Washington bureau -

Don’t forget to THANK GOD even if you are over the moon!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Former American President George W. Bush's Testimony:

Actually, the seeds of my decision had been planted by Rev Billy Graham. One evening my dad asked Billy to answer questions from a big group of family gathered for the weekend. He sat by the fire & talked. And what he said sparked a change in my heart. I don't remember the exact words. It was more the power of his example. The Lord was so clearly reflected in his gentle & loving demeanor.

The next day we walked & talked & I knew I was in the presence of a great man. He was like a magnet; I felt drawn to seek something different. He didn't lecture admonish; he shared warmth & concern. Billy Graham didn't make you feel guilty; he made you feel loved.

It was the beginning of a change in my life. I had always been a "religious" person, had regularly attended church, even taught Sunday school & served as an altar boy. But that weekend my faith took on a new meaning. It was the beginning of a new walk where I would commit my heart to Jesus Christ.

I was humbled to learn that God sent His Son to die for a sinner like me. I was comforted to know that through the Son, I could find God's amazing grace. Through the love of Christ's life, I could understand the life changing powers of faith. (

2Co 5:17 (GW): “Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence.”

Sunday, November 16, 2014


Family counselor John Rosemond asks, "Is your child special . . . the most exceptional person in the world?" He answers, "Of course—to you!"

Rosemond says that letting your child know he's special to you is healthy, but no child should grow up thinking he's more special than others. "That child," he warns, "is likely to think he's also deserving of special things & special privileges." He'll easily "justify outbursts of hurtful anger, selfishness & jealousy." How can we counteract this danger?

Christian parents, if they are grounded in the Scriptures, are equipped to get the right balance.

First, they can affirm their children without showing favoritism by telling them that they are unique creations of God (Psalm 139:13-16).

Second, they can teach their sons & daughters that sin, the great equalizer, is in every individual & that they too need Christ's saving grace (Rom 3:23).

Parents who impart these perspectives are well on their way to fulfilling the Apostle Paul's instruction for child rearing: “Parents, don't be hard on your children. Raise them properly. Teach them and instruct them about the Lord.” (Eph 6:4 CEV). Children with this upbringing are more likely to grow up feeling special without being spoiled. - Joanie Yoder.

“Spoiled children are given what they want; wise parents give them what they need.” (

Friday, November 14, 2014


(Boy Sang Gospel Song Until Kidnapper Released Him)

This is an inspirational story about Willie Myrick who was allegedly abducted by an unknown man in Atlanta, USA. The boy sang a Gospel song non-stop for three hours, which irritated his kidnapper so much that he eventually released him.

According to an April 18, 2014, article by the New York Daily News, an unknown man used cash to lure young Myrick close enough to grab & force the boy into his vehicle on the evening of March 31.

During his close to 3 hour ordeal, Myrick repeatedly sang "Every Praise," a Gospel song by Hezekiah Walker, a song he learned in Sunday school.

While he was singing, Willie said his kidnapper yelled expletives at him. "He told me, shut up &%#* boy," said Willie. He, however, kept singing until his kidnapper got tired.

The kidnapper opened the car door, released Myrick & warned him not to tell anyone. That was one order that Myrick refused to obey & he has been telling the world about the incident since his release.

When Hezekiah Walker got news of this, he flew from New York to meet with Myrick & his church family at the Mt. Carmel Baptist Church in southwest Atlanta to celebrate the boy's 10th birthday.

Walker received a standing ovation when he gave a hug to Willie as the boy cried as he met his favorite singer. The article said that everybody present joined in the singing of "the life-saving song together as tears rolled down Myrick's cheeks." ( &

"Every Praise" (Lyrics)

Every praise is to our God.
Every word of worship with one accord
Every praise every praise is to our God.

Sing hallelujah to our God
Glory hallelujah is due our God
Every praise every praise is to our God.

God, my Savior
God, my Healer
God, my Deliverer
Yes He is, yes He is.

2Ch 20:22 (CEV): "As soon as they began singing, the LORD confused the enemy camp."

Thursday, November 13, 2014


Peter Cartwright was a 19th century circuit riding preacher whose convictions were as tough as the man himself. Nobody could or would accuse Cartwright of compromise.

As a matter of fact, history tells us that one Sunday morning just before he was to preach, Cartwright was told that President Andrew Jackson (1767 – 1845; seventh President of USA) was in the congregation. He was warned to be careful of what he said in light of the President in the place.

Cartwright stood up. "I understand President Jackson is here. I have been requested to be guarded in my remarks. Andrew Jackson will go to hell if he doesn't repent."

Needless to say, the church people were shocked. However, Jackson was delighted at the boldness of the man.

After the service, he shook hands with Cartwright & said, "Sir, if I had a regiment of men like you, I could whip the world." (

Jud 7:3 (GW): Announce to the troops, 'Whoever is scared or frightened should leave Mount Gilead and go back home.' So 22,000 men went back home, and 10,000 were left.

This implies that God cannot use fearful people.

Hence, 2Tim 1:7 (ISV) says: “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but one of power, love, and self-discipline.”

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


If you were born after 1950, you might not know the story of Ben Hur. This classic book written by a Civil War general, Lew Wallace, in 1899, was turned into a movie starring Carleton Heston, which won the Academy Award for best movie in 1959.

(It won a record 11 Academy Awards & 3 Golden Globe Awards. It is widely considered to be one of the greatest films ever made. A remake is scheduled to be released in February 2016).

It is a towering story, deeply moving & an exquisite portrayal of the power, grace & love of Jesus.

When Lew Wallace set out to study the life of Christ, he was not a Christian. In fact, writing a story such as Ben Hur was the farthest thing from his mind.

Wallace was against Christianity & determined he would study the life of Christ so thoroughly & then write so convincingly, that he would be able to kill the story of Christ.

He wanted to prove that Jesus, if He had lived, was not God, but merely a man, that He never rose from the death & that Christianity was a hoax.

So he studied. This great & enormous subject drew him further & further into his research until the evidence overwhelmed him. He dropped to his knees & cried out to Jesus to be his Savior & Lord.

Then, instead of writing a book to prove to the world that Jesus was not God, he wrote Ben Hur, to try to prove to the world that Jesus is God. (‘Jesus, Knowing Our Savior’ by Max Anders)

Jer 31:3 (NLT): Long ago the Lord said to Israel: “I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.”

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Ultimate Thief

Arthur Barry was described by Time magazine as "the slickest second-story man in the East," truly one of the most famous jewel thieves of all time.

In his years of crime, he committed as many as 150 burglaries & stole jewels valued between $5 and $10 million.

Like most people who engage in a life of crime, he was eventually caught, convicted & served 25 years in prison for his crimes. Following his release, he worked as a counterman in a roadside restaurant on the East Coast for $50 a week.

A newspaper reporter found him & interviewed him about his life. After telling about the thrilling episodes of his life, he came to the conclusion of the interview saying, "I am not good at morals. But early in my life, I was intelligent & clever & I got along well with people. I think I could have made something of my life, but I didn't.

So when you write the story of my life, when you tell people about all the burglaries, don't leave out the biggest one of all... Don't just tell them I robbed Jesse Livermore, the Wall Street baron or the cousin of the king of England.

You tell them Arthur Barry robbed Arthur Barry." 


Gal 6:7 (GNB): “Do not deceive yourselves; no one makes a fool of God. You will reap exactly what you plant.”

Sunday, November 9, 2014


When I saw Sadhu Sundar Singh in Europe, he had completed a tour around the world. People asked him, doesn’t it do harm, you’re getting so much honor?"

The Sadhu's answer was: "No. The donkey went into Jerusalem, and they put garments on the ground before him. He was not proud. He knew it was not done to honor him, but for Jesus, who was sitting on his back. When people honor me, I know it is not me, but the Lord, who does the job." - Corrie Ten Boom.

“God is not looking for extraordinary characters as His instruments, but He is looking for humble instruments through whom He can be honored throughout the ages.” - A.B. Simpson.

1Ti 1:17 (CEV): “I pray that honor and glory will always be given to the only God, who lives forever and is the invisible and eternal King! Amen.”

“If I had only one sermon to preach it would be a sermon against pride.” - G.K. Chesterton.

Friday, November 7, 2014

An encouraging word from Dr Ravi Zacharias…

The following story probably stirs my own confidence in the power of God's Word and His sovereignty more than any other.

I was ministering in Vietnam in 1971, and one of my interpreters was Hien Pham, an energetic young Christian. He had worked as a translator with the American forces, and was of immense help both to them and to missionaries such as myself. Hien and I traveled the length of the country and became very close friends before I returned home.

We did not know if our paths would ever cross again. Seventeen years later, I received a telephone call. "Brother Ravi?" the man asked. Immediately I recognized Hien's voice, and he soon told me his story.

Shortly after Vietnam fell, Hien was imprisoned on accusations of helping the Americans. His jailers tried to indoctrinate him against democratic ideals and the Christian faith.

He was restricted to communist propaganda in French or Vietnamese, and the daily deluge of Marx and Engels began to take its toll. "Maybe," he thought, "I have been lied to. Maybe God does not exist. Maybe the West has deceived me." So Hien determined that when he awakened the next day, he would not pray anymore or think of his faith.

The next morning, he was assigned the dreaded chore of cleaning the prison latrines. As he cleaned out a tin can overflowing with toilet paper, his eye caught what seemed to be English printed on one piece of paper.

He hurriedly grabbed it, washed it, and after his roommates had retired that night, he retrieved the paper and read the words, "Romans, Chapter 8." Trembling, he began to read, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him….for I am convinced that nothing shall be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Hien wept. He knew His Bible, and knew that there was not a more relevant passage for one on the verge of surrender. He cried out to God, asking forgiveness, for this was to have been the first day that he would not pray. Evidently God had other plans. What his tormentors were using for refuse—the Scriptures—could not be more treasured to Hien.

After finding the Scripture, Hien asked the commander if he could clean the latrines regularly, because he discovered that some official was using a Bible as toilet paper. Each day Hien picked up a portion of Scripture, cleaned it off, and added it to his collection of nightly reading.

The day came when, through an equally providential set of circumstances, Hien was released from prison. He promptly began to make plans to leave the country and to construct a boat for the escape of him and fifty-three others.

All was going according to plan until days before their departure. Four Vietcong knocked on Hien's door and said they had heard of his escape. He denied it and they left. Hien felt relieved, but at the same time disappointed with himself. He made a promise to God—fervently hoping that God would not take him up on it—that if the Vietcong returned, he would tell them the truth.

He was thoroughly shaken when only a few hours before they were to set sail, the four men returned. When questioned again, Hien confessed the truth. To Hien's astonishment, the men leaned forward and in hushed tones, asked if they could go with him!

In an utterly incredible escape plan, all fifty-eight of them found themselves on the high seas, suddenly engulfed by a violent storm. Hien cried out to God, "Did you bring us here to die?" He said to me, "Brother Ravi, if it were not for the sailing ability of those four Vietcong, we would not have made it." They arrived safely in Thailand, and years later Hien arrived on American soil where today he is a businessman.

How fittingly do the words of the eighteenth-century poet William Cowper capture what God did in Hien's life:

God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea,
And rides upon the storm.

His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding every hour:
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be the flower.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Keep on Praying and Never Give Up

I was called at 10 o’clock one night to pray for a young person given up by the doctor who was dying of infection of lungs. As I looked, I saw that unless God undertook it was impossible for her to live.

I turned to the mother & said, “Well, mother, you will have to go to bed.”

She said, “Oh, I have not had my clothes off for three weeks.”

I said to the daughters, “You will have to go to bed,” but they did not want to go. It was the same with the son.

I put on my overcoat & said, “Good-bye, I’m off.”

They said, “Oh, don’t leave us.” I said, “I can do nothing here.”

They said, “Oh, if you will stop, we will all go to bed.”

I knew that God would move nothing in an atmosphere of mere natural sympathy & unbelief.

They all went to bed and I stayed & that was surely a time as I knelt by that bed face to face with death & with the devil. But God can change the hardest situation & make you know that He is almighty.

Then the fight came. I prayed from 11 to 3:30 in the morning. I saw the glimmering light on the face of the sufferer & saw her pass away.

The devil said, “Now you are done for. You have come from Bradford & the girl has died on your hands.”

I said, “It can’t be. God did not send me here for nothing. This is a time to change strength.”

I remembered that passage which said, “Men ought always to pray and not to faint.” (Luke 18:1).

Death had taken place but I knew that my God was all-powerful & He that had split the Red Sea is just the same today.

I looked at the window & at that moment the face of Jesus appeared. It seemed as though a million rays of light were coming from His face. As He looked at the one who had just passed away, the color came back to the face. She rolled over & fell asleep. Then I had a glorious time.

In the morning she woke early, put on a dressing gown & walked to the piano. She started to play & to sing a wonderful song. The mother & the sisters & the brother had all come down to listen. The Lord had undertaken. A miracle had been wrought.

I am thanking God for difficult cases. The Lord has called us into heart union with Himself. He wants us to have one heart & one Spirit with Him & to do what He Himself loved to do. The lungs were gone but the Lord restored lungs that were perfectly sound. (‘Ever Increasing Faith’ - Smith Wigglesworth)

Monday, November 3, 2014

Changed Lives Show the Truth of Christ

In his book ‘Has Christianity Failed You?’ Ravi Zacharias points to one of the greatest proofs for the truth of Christ and the reality of His resurrection: the changed lives of Christians. He writes:

During the course of nearly 40 years, I have traveled to virtually every continent and seen or heard some of the most amazing testimonies of God's intervention in the most extreme circumstances.

I have seen hardened criminals touched by the message of Jesus Christ and their hearts turned toward good in a way that no amount or rehabilitation could have accomplished.

I have seen ardent followers of radical belief systems turned from being violent, brutal terrorists to becoming mild, tenderhearted followers of Jesus Christ.

I have seen nations where the gospel, banned and silenced by governments, has nevertheless conquered the ethos and mind-set of an entire culture.

2Co 5:17 (GW): “Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence.”

Sunday, November 2, 2014


It is told of Sadhu Sundar Singh that many years ago he was distributing Gospels in the Central Provinces of India and he came to some non-Christians on the railway train and offered a man a copy of John's Gospel.

The man took it, tore it in pieces in anger and threw the pieces out of the window. That seemed the end, but it so happened, in the Providence of God, there was a man anxiously seeking for truth, walking along the line that very day and he picked up as he walked along a little bit of paper and looked at it and the words on it in his own language were 'the Bread of Life'.

He did not know what it meant; but he enquired among his friends and one of them said: 'I can tell you; it is out of the Christian book. You must not read it or you will be defiled.' The man thought for a moment and then said: 'I want to read the book that contains that beautiful phrase': and he bought a copy of the New Testament.

He was shown where the sentence occurred-our Lord's words 'I am the Bread of Life'; and as he studied the gospel, the light flooded into his heart, he came to the knowledge of Jesus Christ, and he became a preacher of the gospel in the Central Provinces of India.

That little bit of paper through God's Spirit was indeed the ‘Bread of life’ to him, satisfying his deepest need. - John A. Patten.

John 6:35 (ESV): Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.”

Friday, October 31, 2014


There is a difference between proof and evidence.

No one can prove Christianity but no one can disprove it and there is much evidence that it's true.

Faith is not blind - there is much great evidence that our faith is based on logic and truth and not just blind. Evidences: Jesus, Resurrection, changed lives, etc. (

“Faith must have adequate evidence, else it is mere superstition.” - A.A. Hodge.

Act 14:17 (GNB): “But he has always given evidence of his existence by the good things he does: he gives you rain from heaven and crops at the right times; he gives you food and fills your hearts with happiness."

“Failure to believe stems from moral failure to recognize the truth; not from want of evidence, but from willful neglect or distortion of the evidence.” - D.A. Carson.

Act 17:31 (CEV): “He has set a day when he will judge the world's people with fairness. And he has chosen the man Jesus to do the judging for him. God has given proof of this to all of us by raising Jesus from death.”

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


I sat with my friend in a well-known coffee shop in a neighboring town of Venice, Italy.

As we enjoyed our coffee, a man entered & sat at an empty table beside us. He called the waiter & placed his order saying, “Two cups of coffee, one of them there on the wall.”

We heard this order with rather interest & observed that he was served with one cup of coffee but he paid for two.

When he left, the waiter put a piece of paper on the wall saying “A Cup of Coffee”.

While we were still there, two other men entered & ordered three cups of coffee, two on the table & one on the wall. They had two cups of coffee but paid for three & left.

This time also, the waiter did the same; he put a piece of paper on the wall saying, “A Cup of Coffee”.

It was something unique & perplexing for us. We finished our coffee, paid the bill & left.

After a few days, we had a chance to go to this coffee shop again. While we were enjoying our coffee, a man poorly dressed entered. As he seated himself, he looked at the wall & said, “One cup of coffee from the wall.”

The waiter served coffee to this man with the customary respect & dignity. The man had his coffee & left without paying.

We were amazed to watch all this, as the waiter took off a piece of paper from the wall & threw it in the trash bin.

Now it was no surprise for us – the matter was very clear. The great respect for the needy shown by the people of this town made our eyes well up in tears. (

Pro 19:17 GNB): “When you give to the poor, it is like lending to the LORD, and the LORD will pay you back.”

Tuesday, October 28, 2014


When I was just a boy, I was intrigued by a large cucumber. It was no different from any other cucumber, but it was in the strangest place. My uncle kept it in a bottle on a shelf. This particular cucumber was many times too large to go through the neck of the bottle. I wondered how it got there in the first place.

I was filled with awe of my uncle who could perform such a feat. He joked about it & never told me how he did it. My mother finally explained that when the cucumber was very tiny, it had been passed through the narrow neck & allowed to grow while still attached to the vine.

My mother practiced a similar principle with her children. From my earliest memory she surrounded me with prayer & instruction & the gospel. As a result, I was brought to Christ & am now safe in the bottle of His salvation.

What a lesson for parents who have "little cucumbers" at home. Don't let anything interfere with your first duty toward them. The person who said "Give me a child till he is 7 & I care not who gets him after that" knew the value of early training.

Don't neglect your little cucumbers. Soon they will be big. - M R De Haan

Pro 22:6 (BBE): “If a child is trained up in the right way, even when he is old he will not be turned away from it.”

“Train up a child in the way he should go - but be sure you go that way yourself.” - Charles Spurgeon.

Monday, October 27, 2014


(Described in Proverbs 31)

- is LOYAL


- is HARD TO FIND (a rare gem)


- has INNER BEAUTY (Heart attraction)

- WORKS WITH HER HANDS (a lovely life producing loving deeds)







“To be a mother is by no means second class. Men may have the authority in the home, but the women have the influence. The mother, more than the father, is the one who molds and shapes those little lives from day one.” - John MacArthur.

“No man is poor who has had a godly mother.” - Abraham Lincoln.

Friday, October 24, 2014


A little boy walked along a country lane one dark night, with his father, and carried the lantern. The black silence all about frightened him.

He said, "Father, this light reaches such a little way, I am afraid." His father answered, "True, my boy, but if you walk on, the light will shine to the end of your journey."

There are night times in the Christian's experience when God gives His followers only enough light to take the next step. And that is all that is needed.

We may be sure of one thing- the light will never go out. If we walk on, it will shine to the end of the journey. (Sunday School Times)

“Keep walking the walk, one step at a time.” - Joyce Meyer.

“God won't light your second step until you have taken the first one.” - Woodrow Kroll.

Psa 32:8 CEV): “You said to me, "I will point out the road that you should follow. I will be your teacher and watch over you.”

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


Mat 5:16 (KJV): “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

Among the ancient Greeks the runner that won the race was not the man who crossed the line in the shortest time, but the man who crossed it in the least time with his torch still burning. We are so busy with life's activities that we are in danger of allowing the torch of our spiritual life to become extinguished. - Doran's Ministers' Manual.

How to shine before men?

~Don’t be ashamed.

~Don’t be intimidated.

~Don’t cover your light to avoid others discovering it.

~Let it penetrate and dispel the darkness around you.

~Let them see your good works.

~Let them see how you love even when you’re treated unfairly.

~How you’re kind and generous in situations of favoritism and injustice.

~How you’re patient and self-controlled in the midst of irritation and inefficiency.

It is our choices that will ultimately be an example of Christ to the world and ultimately bring glory to God. And as our very lives reflect His light, He is glorified through us. (

“We are told to let our light shine, and if it does, we won't need to tell anybody it does. Lighthouses don't fire cannons to call attention to their shining- they just shine.” - D.L. Moody.

Monday, October 20, 2014


In 1886, Karl Benz drove his first automobile through the streets of Munich, Germany. He named his car the Mercedes Benz, after his daughter, Mercedes.

The machine angered the citizens, because it was noisy & scared the children & horses. Pressured by the citizens, the local officials immediately established a speed limit for "horseless carriages" of 5.5 km/hr in the city limits & 11 km/hr outside.

Benz knew he could never develop a market for his car & compete against horses if he had to creep along at those speeds, so he invited the mayor of the town for a ride. The mayor accepted.

Benz then arranged for a milkman to park his horse & wagon on a certain street & as Benz & the mayor drove by, to whip up his old horse & pass them & as he did so to give the German equivalent of the Bronx cheer. The plan worked.

The mayor was furious & demanded that Benz overtake the milk wagon. Benz apologized but said that because of the speed law he was not permitted to go any faster. Very soon after that the law was changed. (Bits & Pieces)

“The kingdom of God is righteousness and peace. True wisdom is never argumentative or quarrelsome. It does not strive. It maintains harmonious relationships with everyone, as far as possible.” - Zac Poonen.

Jas 3:18 (CEV): “When peacemakers plant seeds of peace, they will harvest justice.”

Friday, October 10, 2014


A rich man was determined to give his mother a birthday present that would outshine all others. He read of a bird that had a vocabulary of 4000 words, could speak in numerous languages & sing 3 operatic arias.

He immediately bought the bird for $50,000 & had it delivered to his mother. The next day he phoned to see if she had received the bird. "What did you think of the bird?" he asked.

She replied, "It was delicious."

“We do not know the value of Christ, if we will not cleave to Him unto death!” - Robert Murray.

Heb 10:29 (GNB): “What, then, of those who despise the Son of God? who treat as a cheap thing the blood of God's covenant which purified them from sin? who insult the Spirit of grace? Just think how much worse is the punishment they will deserve!”

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


The story is told of a pastor of a large church who had a dream one night that really opened his eyes. He dreamed that he could see his own church worship service on Sunday morning. But there was something very strange happening.

The choir was singing. The mouths of the choir members were open......but no sound was heard. The people in the congregation were singing. But there was nothing from their mouths, either. The preacher himself got up to preach his typical Sunday sermon. He opened his mouth to preach.....but nothing came out.

There was absolutely no sound at all in the entire worship center. Then, the pastor saw a little girl up in the balcony & heard her little voice singing, "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me."

The pastor was confused & suddenly woke up. "Lord, what was I dreaming? It doesn’t make sense to me." He asked.

The Lord spoke to his heart & said, "Pastor, you just saw a picture of what I see in your ministry & in your church every Sunday morning. People are singing & you are preaching.......but I hear nothing. Your heart is not focused on me. You are focused on yourself. The only one I heard in your church last Sunday was the little girl in the balcony who matters to very few people in your church. But she matters to me......because she came to church today with the right motive: to love me with all of her heart!"

What if Jesus showed you a dream of your church? What would He hear? Whose heart is truly focused on the Lord? (Dr. Larry Petton, Cross Pointe Community Church)

Mat 15:8 (GW): “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.”

Wednesday, October 1, 2014


"Our Enemy will bait the hook with anything we find desirable. This means, he will gladly give us money, power, pleasure, sex, fame, fortune & relationships. Satan's goal is for us to take the bait without seeing the hook & once the hook is in our mouth, he then reels us in to take us captive.

His gifts are often very good things offered for sinful uses. He'll challenge us to examine the gift to ensure its quality. That is the essence of the trap. The gift may be good, but the giver is evil.

In this way, Satan & demons are akin to a pedophile who seeks to entice children into trust with gifts of candy & toys, only to destroy them.

"When we take the gifts Satan & demons give, we are in essence biting down on the bait. As a result, the hook of sin is in our mouth, & Satan reels us in as his captive so that, as Jesus says in John 8:34, we become slaves to our sin." (‘Precious Remedies against Satan's Devices’ by Thomas Brooks)

Gal 5:1 (GW): "Christ has freed us so that we may enjoy the benefits of freedom. Therefore, be firm in this freedom, and don't become slaves again."