Blockages – 2018.11.27

But my righteous one will live by faith.
And I take no pleasure in the one who shrinks back.
Hebrews 10:38

So God speaks to those who have come to believe Him, who have accepted Jesus as their redeemer, who are filled with the Holy Spirit. But sometimes there are blockages in us.
Believe blockages can arise when severe illness attacks us. But when I lack faith that Jesus can heal me, then there will be a brother who has the power to pray with me for healing.
But sometimes there are hidden reasons for sickness, open doors for the tortures of the enemy. There are other brothers who are especially capable of uncovering these backgrounds, so that Jesus now can work.
It may be that a third brother has to come in to see if everything is psychologically healthy. Severe traumata may have occured in childhood which burden him and make him unhappy. This brother can pray for these emotional wounds so that the soal is purified.
God does miracles.
Sometimes the blockage is simply the ill-making sin that we do not want to let go. In this situation it takes a loving brother who reveals this and pray for forgiveness and release that healing can take place.
We often also need brothers who help and encourage us to forgive when others have done us severely wrong so that we finally get well at soul and body.
There are may gifts. Nobody has them all, and nobody has none. We are dependent on each other. Therefore a prayer in communion with many is far better!  We do not want to shrink back and live in faith on low flame. We are ready to receive all what God wants to give us. Away with all the blockages that prevent us from receiving God`s goodness. Enter into the fullness of life and take the joy of the Lord.

Thank You, Jesus, You have a solution for every problem. If we only would listen to You. Forgive, if we think to small of You, do not trust You, encourage us to become big and strong in faith.

In vain? – 2018.11.26

Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.
Luke 5, 4

Many people stood on the shore of the lake and wanted to hear Jesus. Then He asked Peter for a place in the boat, and that he should row a little distance from the shore. After the sermon Jesus said the verse above to Peter. But he was astonished, he knew his lake; – there were no fish at noon. But when He said it, Peter wanted to try it. And indeed, the net was overflowing, so they needed help. Peter was overwhelmed: He, the fisherman, had found his Master, and he knelt down before Jesus. He realized he was only a sinner, but Jesus is more, much, much more! Even the lake and the fish obey him! Jesus said to Simon Peter: “Do not be afraid! (Peter was afraid of the supernatural, of a God in human form; it was scary to him, that’s why he was afraid). From now on you will catch people.” Peter and his people left everything behind and followed Him.
Many, many Christians struggle with all their might for the Gospel, but it is very laborious, without much success, and they have become tired. The Lord is waiting for this chance. It is as it was with Peter. They were sitting after a long night’s work mending the nets. They had caught nothing. And there Jesus comes and gives the word: “Go out onto the lake! Jesus went with them. That is probably the decisive thing: He is present, He is the captain. He determines when and where the nets are thrown. That is why listening was so important before the catch: he learned to trust in Jesus. Without prayer, nothing happens except endless activities that don’t bring much, but cost a lot of strength. So, once again: first our own futile attempt, then listening to Jesus and trusting Him, then His command: go now, go there! And obeying by doing what HE silently tells us to do. And then: HE fills the net. It is certainly not our ability, experience, merit or talent. That is why the frustration was so important before, so that HE gets the honour and not ourselves.
If you also belong to the tired, disappointed workers of God, then please take courage again: it is His plan. Now HE can finally work. Remain in silence until HE begins to speak. He will clarify many things in your life beforehand and then at some point His Word will come: “Go out and throw out the nets! ….. and the net will become full.

Thank You Jesus, for Your word for me! I had already given it up, but You raised me up again, gave me courage and sent me out. Actually I didn’t want any more …. but at Your word I dared. And it has become a blessing for many. Thank You that You can still use me for something! You are so wonderful, Jesus!

No condemnation – 2018.11.25

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,
Romans 8:1

Hallelujah! God made me free! He send Jesus to bear my sins, now the sins are gone and exterminated. Now I can not be charged, convicted, or condemned by anyone.
Sometimes I remember stupid mistakes. And I notice how feelings of guilt start growing. But Jesus doesn’t want this to happen! He reminds me that all sin has been taken away. If I agree to it and start to praise Him His Spirit will work within me and I will start believing that my sins are forgiven and that I am free. Now I don’t want to think about those old stories anymore, because when I do guild and condemnation will rule again.
Sometimes others will remind me of my failures. But then I can turn to the Lord and He will ensure me, it is over. It is forgiven and forgotten.
From time to time the devil will have some fun with me and he remembers me of all my wrongdoings. He rubs my nose into it and asks if I am sure that I am a christian, surely Jesus couldn’t use someone like me. But the enemy is a liar and I don’t want to listen to Him but to the word of Jesus. I can trust the word of Jesus.
The note of debt that bound us is teared up and erased since Jesus died on the cross. As long as we are with Jesus Christ there is no condemnation anymore! If God doesn’t judge us, who are we to do so anyway? We are not allowed to condemn others as well. Instead we should praise Jesus and glorify God for the wonderful redemption and deliverance! This thankfulness will turn our focus away from our sins towards Jesus and we will gain freedom and joy. The Spirit of the Lord is changing our heart if we praise Jesus and we will believe truly.

Yes Jesus I want to praise You because You saved me! I can’t be condemned by nothing and no one, not even by myself. You own me. You live within me and You make me happy, free, and joyful. It’s great that You are with me!!

My God – 2018.11.24

I have said to you: You are my servant!
I have chosen you and not rejected you.
Do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I help you, yes, I strengthen you,
yes, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. …
For I am Lord, your God
who takes hold of your right hand
and who says to you:
do not fear, I will help you.
Do not be afraid, O worm Jacob,
o little Israel!
For I myself will help you, declares the Lord,
your Redeemer. …
But you will rejoice in the Lord
and glory in the Holy One of Israel.
Isaiah 41: 9-10, 13-14, 16

What a great word of God for us, for you and for me. How much comfort and strength are in it. You should let melt each word in your mouth.
God had said it: You are my servant! An He keeps His word for ever! It is and it will remain so: You are His!
He has chosen you and did not reject you. How many people ignore us, but God is not despising us. He has mercy on us, no misery is too big for Him.
He is the great God who created heaven and earth. And this God says to me: Fear not, I am with you! I am your God and uphold you with my righteous right hand. He will help me. I am certain about that. He will not expose me to the wickedness of men. He, my Saviour, is here!
I am only a worm, a little one. I cannot change the world. I cannot do anything against earthquake, flood and drought. I am helpless, cannot rescue myself when I am suddenly in a hail of bullets, or when a bombe is exploding near me. But He is my Lord! He takes me by my hand, helps me and redeems me. The injustice may rage as it likes. I am safe in my Lord! He is stronger!

Thank you, Jesus, in your presence I need not to fear anything. You take me by my hand and walk with me through the day and through my whole life. You are my powerful, wonderful God!

Our daily bread – 2018.11.23

Give us this today our daily bread.
Matthew 6, 11

Self-pity and envy are our worst enemies.
Lord, now I’ve been eating porridge for 6 weeks and the neighbour who never prays is eating fried chicken today. Oh Lord, how I would love to have what he is having! Couldn’t you send me a fried chicken just once? ….. Self-pity paired with envy.
Lord, my neighbour already has his fourth Audi A8 and I, your servant, still ride a bicycle! Is that fair? Lord, do something! ….. Envy paired with self-pity.
Where is our faith that the Father in Heaven cares for His children? Everybody, especially some Christians, can only moan. But only a few can eat porridge and ride a bicycle cheerfully and gratefully.
What has God promised us concretely? Eating and being satiated. Drinking. Clothing. A roof over our heads. Work to nourish oneself (and not lying on others’ pockets, not even the social welfare office).
What causes us to not like how God cares for us? Self-pity, envy and lack of humility. Once we have gone through this school, God can take us one step further and provide us abundantly with everything.
I think of the children of Israel in the desert. How they complained! Manna every day, always only dry manna and once again manna….. No, how we long for the meat pots of Egypt! – In reality it was thin soup, and flat bread so thin that one could see right through it. – Please, never glorify the past!
Gratitude. It distinguishes disciples of Jesus. Jesus himself did not live in such luxury. He often did not know in the morning where to lay His head in the evening. And yet His life was marked by gratitude. In all situations He knew Himself in God’s hand, even when the storm tried to sink the boat, He slept peacefully in God’s hand. Faith makes you strong! Gratitude makes you happy! Or have you ever starved to death? Gone thirsty? Walked around naked? Slept on the street?
Rather compare yourself with the Christians in North Korea or those in Sudan etc. How well off are you compared to them! Be grateful for your daily care.
Or do you think you really deserve it? Wait until you have cancer, your wife runs away or an accident leaves you disabled. Where is your pride then? What have you honestly earned then? – God, our Father, is our provider. How good it is that HE loves us so much!

Thank You Father, for taking care of me. I don’t have a palace and I don’t have gourmet food all the time. But I am so glad that You take care of me! Thank You for food, clothing, a home and work! How good it is to live with You!

Bride and groom – 2018.11.22

This is a profound mystery; I refer to Christ and the Church.
Ephesians 5, 32

What is meant is the secret of marriage. Many are married, but not exactly happy. Without a partner, as they know, they wouldn’t be, but with their partner they wouldn’t be either. Only a few have a really happy marriage.
Jesus wants something like a happy marriage with His church. He is the lover, the fiancé, the bridegroom, who longs for His church, loves it with every fiber of His heart and wants to have it as close as possible to Him. There is the church, the virgin, the bride, the girlfriend and lover. She longs for the Lord, her Bridegroom, because only with Him is she happy, victorious, safe and joyful.
Jesus has His flock, which He calls together from all denominations, churches. They are His beloved people. He knows each one by name, and He even has a nickname for each one. He wants to deal with each one as a bridegroom does with his bride: to please them, to love them, to carry them. He gives His life for the bride, He loves her so much.
That is why loneliness and the feeling of abandonment is no longer a big problem for those who love Jesus. He is there for them! He is the friend, the beloved, the longed for, the helper, consoler and companion! Please, take Jesus at his word: I am with you every day to the end of the world.
For those who have not made it far in life, Jesus’ word is redemption: they are worth much, much to Him. He is like a bridegroom to them, like a friend. We may entrust all sorrow to Him, and He comforts and helps. If we are full of joy, He rejoices with us. If we are sleepless, He is there, holding our hand and gently stroking our hair. If we are sad, HE builds us up again. If we are in need, HE helps us. He is simply wonderful!

Thank You, Jesus! You seek our nearness and rejoice in us. Yes, we also want to love You, seek You and have time for You. It is You who makes my heart happy! You put an end to my loneliness.  You are there, my beloved, my friend, my helper!

Sacraments, Signs and Holy Symbols – 2018.11.21

“This cup is the new covenant in my blood.
Do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me!”
Jesus says.
1 Corinthians 11:25

The Lord`s supper is a sacrament full of power and life. We are one with Him when we accept it.
The baptism is a sacrament irrevocably valid for the visible and unvisible world.
The cross is a holy symbol.
The marriage is a sacrament like the mystery of the church being the bride of the groom Jesus.
The rainbow is God`s symbol for His grace after the flood.
The Passover lamb as a visible sign points to the death of Jesus on the cross.
The wipes of Saint Peter, that have healed people, are holy symbols.
Our hands, which we lay on the sick, are instruments of God through which the power of healing flows.
Some churches have lost touch with the holy symbols, only fulfill them ritually. In addition they have added they own symbols. That caused other churches to drop them altogether. They do not lay their hands on the sick anymore thinking God can heal without these blessings. They have been alienated from the biblical symbols. They doubt their effect only trusting their own judgement and heart-feeling.
But God has given us these holy symbols. Jesus is really present at the Last Supper. In remembrance of Him He acts in us, changes us.
At baptism in the Holy Spirit He sees the newborn person exactly and rejoices. There is power in the cross when we take it upon ourselves and follow Jesus. Our hands become channels of healing when we lay them on the sick in faith. This may be beyond our understanding. But God wants to show Himself in wonder and signs. Therefore respect and honor them and remain open to their benificial effects. He wants to strengthen our faith by that. He wants to serve us, gives us His hand, makes himself available to us. Let us honor the Lord`s signs and meet Him in them. Just believe in the signs and miracles that bring you closer to Jesus and do not ponder so much about it. If the Christian rituals are not lived with burning hearts they degenerate into superstition. We, however, want to meet and see Jesus only!

Thank You, Jesus, for the signs of grace. They strongly support my faith in You. There is something I can see and which make me strong. How well You understand me! You know that sometimes we need Your signs which lift us up.