barnabas.in : Alexi George

Are You Overcoming the World or Has the World Overcome You?

Have you been able to live the life God has for you? Some wait for things in life to get settled: Jobs, family and other matters. For many, they’ve wanted to live up to the potential that God intended, but the cares of this life have taken over.

There is more to this life than just making it through, fulfilling all your responsibilities. We can live a life pleasing to God. Our life can be centered around God’s purposes for us. We can live our lives to the full potential that God intended for us. Unfortunately, the world (the cares of this world) have overcome us and our priorities.

The Bible makes it clear that “everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” (1John 5:4-5)

When we are born of God, we become his sons and daughters. As the Son of God, Jesus lived in this world and overcame the world. Whenever we sense that the world is taking over our thoughts, priorities and our entire life, it’s time to look to Jesus.

He was the Son of God who lived this life and overcame the world. Therefore, since we also are children of God, we can overcome the world. Our faith in Jesus will sustain us and help us to live an overcoming life.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website barnabas.in

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Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language video of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others who may benefit from reading this.

* My book recommendations on various topics are available at my Resources Page.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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I Have a Confession to Make

I have a confession to make. After claiming to have known Jesus for over forty years, I now question that claim. Oh, it’s nothing serious — but maybe it is.

You see, John wrote: “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves God has been born of God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (1 John 4:7-8)

If I claim to have a relationship with God, I should love others Just like Jesus loved. That means I should live a life of complete forgiveness because true love demands it. God’s love has no place for holding grudges of any kind toward anyone.

Love also demands that I accept everyone for who they are. Even if their behavior is unacceptable to me, I must love and accept them for who they are – in spite of their unacceptable behavior. Even if their behavior does not change, I need to love.  

By the example of Jesus, love demands that I give till I die. My giving is not to be limited to money, but time, energy, and myself.

Really, this love thing should not be taken too far. How much can one give? If you keep giving like that, it can only lead to death.

And that’s what Jesus did.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website barnabas.in

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language summary of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others who may benefit from reading this.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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Single Minded New Year

Happy New Year to all my friends who read these blog posts.

What do you want for this new year? Do you have any new plans? New resolutions? New ways of changing your direction and situation in life?

Here is a thought I’d like to leave with you for 2017. Be single minded. Be focused. Be resolute.

“But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” (James 1:6-8)

Although the above verse is dealing with receiving wisdom, the principle of the double-minded person is broadly applicable. Let’s be single minded in 2017. Double Mindedness gets you moving from one thing to another, never focusing on anything with certainty.

Trust God’s voice for this new year. You’ve been hearing His voice and now it is time to trust and take a step. He will lead you in the right path. Be single minded on God’s plan for you this year. What is that one thing God has asked of you? Settle on that and make it your single focus for 2017.

This doesn’t mean you ignore your other responsibilities. It’s just that your priority for the next 12 months gets focused on that one thing God has asked of you. Be single minded. Stay focused.

Enjoy the New Year

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website barnabas.in

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam video of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others who may benefit from reading this.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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Love is Dangerous

There are lots of discussions on how love is to be expressed. The expectations may be different among friends, spouses, relatives, coworkers, or neighbors. You’ll also find differences in each culture all across the globe.

The Bible puts Jesus in the mix and says “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers” (1 John 3:16).

The example of Jesus is very clear. He literally laid down his life for us. What we are to do is also very clear, but quite disturbing. “We ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.”

What’s difficult is that the verse refers to our “brothers.” We expect more from those in the faith. We’re less tolerant when offended by our brothers and sisters in the faith. For outsiders, we have a different set of expectations.

So, the next time someone close to you offends you, lay down your life. When someone speaks against you, lay down your life. When your brother or sister does harm to you, lay down your life.

In this way, we become more like Jesus.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language video summary of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others by using the sharing buttons below.

* My book recommendations on various topics are available at my Resources Page.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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Look at Jesus This Christmas

N. T. Wright was asked what he would tell his children on his deathbed. He said he would tell them, “Look at Jesus.” This statement sounds quite simplistic. Isn’t there anything more of substance to share on your deathbed?

I am reminded of that powerful verse from Hebrews where we are reminded to do the same thing. I don’t know if N. T. Wright had this verse in mind when he made the above statement. The writer of Hebrews gives an amazing list of people who stood for the faith in the midst of unbelievable adversity. Along with them, we are reminded to look to Jesus whatever we face in life.

“Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2)

This Christmas, let’s look to Jesus who is the foundation for our faith and the one who will keep us till the end. In fact, he promised that he will never leave us nor forsake us. Where else can you get such a promise? I know that this statement may be simple, but it is substantial.

Look to Jesus always. There is no better way.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website barnabas.in

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam video of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others who may benefit from reading this.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.

 


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Is the Bible Reliable?

When I was about ten years old, my father sent me to the bank for a transaction. While I waited at the end of the long line of people, I read my Bible. After a while, a man walked up to me and asked what I was reading. I happily told him that I was reading the Bible.

With a look of deep concern, he began to tell me that the Bible is entirely fiction. He told me that all the stories of Adam and Eve, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and the rest o the Bible are totally unreliable. Such people never existed in the past.

I heard similar claims from people throughout my teenage years. These accusations caused me to read more and search further about the Bible’s reliability. Now, after years of study and ministry, I come back to the simple reality mentioned numerous times in the Bible. The authenticity comes through eyewitnesses with first-hand experience with God.

“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life” (1 John 1:1).

From beginning to end, the Bible contains records of people who have connected with God. Those records have been preserved and passed on through the generations. The Bible is clear that the Holy Spirit was active throughout this entire process. Thus we consider it God’s word, completely reliable.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language video summary of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others by using the sharing buttons below.

* My book recommendations on various topics are available at my Resources Page.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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Why is God So Slow to Keep His Promises?

I really wish that God would move a bit faster in answering my prayers. Why does he always seem to take his time? We want quick results. Our prayers become demands rather than requests. Our expectation is to get immediate results.

But God has a totally different frame of reference. For him, “one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” God looks at life from a perspective that is broader than we can ever understand.

“But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:8-9).

God looks at us and views our entire life at a glance. He sees everything from the beginning to the end all at once. So when he makes a decision, it is much beyond the need of the moment.

What is your need today? Which areas in your life do you need God to intervene and make a difference? Remember – God sees your entire life at a glance. From his perspective, he is not in a hurry. He is not late in keeping his promise to you. He is right on time.

Would you trust God and his timing for your life? His timing is the best. Surely he has your best interest in mind.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language video summary of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others by using the sharing buttons below.

* My book recommendations on various topics are available at my Resources Page.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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Ever wished for a life without limitations?

How would you like to have unlimited resources available at your fingertips? Imagine what you could do with limitless knowledge and power constantly available to you. But to be like that, you would need to be God.

Can we become like God? This was the claim that Satan made to Adam and Eve as they were considering the forbidden fruit. In fact, this was the same point of temptation that led Satan to his downfall.

God had already created Adam and Eve in his own image but they gave in to the temptation to desire something that was not meant for them. Their disobedience caused them to loose the divine characteristics they had. Thus sin and all its effects have become a part of our lives.

So now we experience the brokenness and suffering due to our sinful state. The image of God in us was disfigured and the human nature has completely taken over.

But fortunately, we have the privilege of taking part in the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4). This is a process that we go through as we are formed into the image of Jesus. Although it is not clear what that means in its entirety, I will take all I can get.

So, do I have the unlimited resources that I’ve wished for? What I do know is that God has unlimited resources, and I am being transformed to be like him. Submit yourself to God and the transforming work of the Holy Spirit. 

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language video of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others by using the sharing buttons below.

* My book recommendations on various topics are available at my Resources Page.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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Your Anxieties Will Lead You to the Devil or to Jesus

Whenever you face a difficult situation, there is a reason why you must turn to Jesus first. Your enemy, the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for an opportunity to take advantage of the situation.

“Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world” (1 Peter 5:7-9 ESV).

We are instructed to cast all our anxieties on Jesus because he cares for us. But when we hold on to our anxieties, we become weak. As a person who is weak in our hearts and minds, we become an easy target for the enemy. The Devil prowls around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour. Usually, the weakest are the quickest prey for the devil.

So here is the truth for you. As quickly as possible, identify and acknowledge your anxieties. Give it to God as soon as you realize it. This way, you won’t be an easy target for the devil.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language video summary of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others.

* My book recommendations on various topics are available at my Resources Page.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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Does Suffering Free You From Sin?

Suffering causes a shift in the mind and heart of a person in regards to sin. When people suffer, they think differently. Their values and decisions are altered significantly. Peter said, “since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God” (1 Peter 4:1-2 ESV).

The suffering that’s mentioned in the previous chapter (1 Peter 3) is for the sake of righteous living. “Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing (1 Peter 3:8-9). In their suffering, the natural human tendency is to respond according to how we are treated. But we are to be righteous in character regardless of the situation.

Jesus also suffered. But his suffering was much beyond the physical pain. He did not retaliate when he was attacked. He silently suffered their abuse, although he could have easily called on all the heavenly resources available to him. His inward suffering was of a much greater degree than the bodily torture.

He knew that he could retaliate. He had every right to respond, but he willfully chose not to. He did not have to allow the abuse but he held back from retaliating or asking for help from his Father. That mental struggle was possibly the greatest suffering of our Master. The sufferings of Jesus caused a significant mental shift in him that He was fully devoted to the will of His father and lived a life free of sin. 

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

—————

Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

* For a Malayalam language video summary of this post, visit my Facebook page.

* If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others by using the sharing buttons below.

* My book recommendations on various topics are available at my Resources Page.

* For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.


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