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February 1st, 2013

Why I Love Charismatic People

Why I Love Charismatic People

Samuel, the pastor was a known figure active in all seasons, whether hot sunshine or heavy rain. He had an arch handled umbrella and very old, worn out Jubbah. He would be carrying an old Bible always in his hands. He wouldn’t mind whether it is a boy, young man or old people; his method was to start preaching the Gospel right away.

Many would change their way in order not to confront the pastor. He would never leave anyone empty handed ones came up on his way. The real fact was that I couldn’t always reach school without facing Samuel. Our land was predominantly Syro Malabar rite; strong catholic belief was deep rooted in the blood of people who claimed to receive faith directly from St. Thomas the Apostle. Here, Samuel the pastor was a real ‘surplus’.

Reasons were two; he had been a member of the low caste; in the language of the government – a converted Christian. As such the pastor’s place was much the scapegoat against the rich heritage of the people of the land. The other reason was that he had nothing to speak pleasing the thoughts of the strong Catholics.

The boy of the fourth standard was amazed at the heavy flowing river in the village. There was no other way except to cross the river. I had been always slow in walking, then and now. It is the custom that the slow ones become last on their journey. That was the case on the day.

As I was trying to put my step into the water, catching hold of my bag… suddenly there was someone with powerful hands to catch me from behind. When I turned, it was Samuel, the pastor. Without saying a word, he took me on his shoulders and put his steps into the river. Yes, even he was finding it hard to cross the river which was flowing heavily. He followed me a while even after the river. Then too he was silent. It was the first time I see him not speaking a word.

It was the time when there was heavy rain and flood all over. I am sure that if I had stepped into water that day, I would never be on earth to pen these lines (I see your face in smile, had it happened? Isn’t it) Slowly Samuel was evading from our land. Sometimes it was because I couldn’t see him as I grew older and moved to higher classes.

Baiju made me remember Samuel, the pastor after almost thirty years. He is a friend of mine from Nottingham. I knew him ever since I reached Nottingham University for studies. Baiju telephoned me one of these evenings… ‘Praise the Lord, Brother Santimon…’ I replied, ‘Praise the Lord.’ ‘I heard that you became a pastor, is it true.’ He enquired. I got the point. A small prayer group in London had found me as a preacher, as they didn’t get anyone else. Coming back from prayer meeting I received his call.

For sure, I remembered Samuel, the pastor; His worn out old dress, Bible and heavy filled river. There was a period in my life that I claimed Charismatic men are to be stoned to death. A time when I believed that all those who work miracles in the “name of God” are hypocrites. Period when I philosophically analyzed that healings were mere psycho somatic relieves.

Don’t you remember that age old drama of revolution; ‘You made me a communist…’ I just make it new… ‘You made me a charismatic…’

I cannot forget a day in November, six years back; days when I had been carrying within me a cloud of sorrows. Many faces were of love and concern amidst the few ready to devour me. I came to know that with such so called reliability, gossips can be spread easily. Many of us write our own stories as we like, once we get a character in our play. No hunter sends the arrow after consulting the prey, does he? Most probable point would be the most unnoticed.

True. I had nothing to rely on except the Bible – that book which I put aside as a boring text for years. That was an English Bible. When I opened it, these words struck me first; “The mountains and hills may crumble, but my steadfast love for you will never end…” (Is. 54:10).

An experienced smith changes the shape of the weapon putting it under fire. Yes, this is less sharp, my dear friend. I would be more and more conscious that this weapon shouldn’t hurt anyone.

There are stars as well as black holes in Charismatic field. We are consoled that there are more stars than the black holes. It is this consolation that makes us believe more and more in the goodness of men.

– – – written by Santhimon Jacob

June 15th, 2009

Story : All He Had To Offer

All-He-Had-to-offer

Here is a story, about a nine year old boy who lived in a rural town in Tennessee. His house was in a poor area of the community. A church there had a bus ministry that came knocking on his door one Saturday afternoon.

The child came to answer the door and greeted the bus pastor.

The bus pastor asked if his parents were home and the small boy told him that his parents take off every weekend and leave him at home to take care of his little brother. The bus pastor couldn’t believe what the child said and asked him to repeat it. The youngster gave the same answer and the bus pastor asked to come in and talk with him. They went into the living room and sat down on an old couch with the foam and springs exposed. The bus pastor asked the child, “Where do you go to church?”

The young boy surprised the visitor by replying, “I’ve never been to church in my whole life.” The bus pastor thought to himself about the fact that his church was less than three miles from the child’s house.

“Are you sure you have never been to church?” he asked again.

“I’m sure I haven’t,” came his answer.

Then the bus pastor said, “Well, son, more important than going to church, have you ever heard the greatest love story ever told?” and then he proceeded to share the Gospel with this little nine year old boy.

The young lad’s heart began to be tenderized and at the end of the bus pastor’s story, the bus pastor asked if the boy wanted to receive this free gift from God. The youngster exclaimed, “OF COURSE!”

The child and the bus pastor got on their knees and the lad invited Jesus into his little heart and received the free gift of salvation. They both stood up and the bus pastor asked if he could pick the child up for church the next morning.

“Sure,” the nine year old replied.

The bus pastor got to the house early the next morning and found the lights off. He let himself in and snaked his way through the house and found the little boy asleep in his bed. He woke up the little boy and his brother and helped get them dressed. They got on the bus and ate a doughnut for breakfast on their way to church.

Keep in mind that this boy had never been to church before.

The church was a real big one. The little child just sat there, clueless of what was going on. A few minutes into the service, these tall unhappy guys walked down to the front and picked up some wooden plates. One of the men prayed and the child, with utter fascination, watched them walk up and down the aisles. He still didn’t know what was going on. Suddenly, like a bolt of lightning, it hit the child what was taking place.

These people must be giving money to Jesus. He then reflected on the free gift of life he had received just twenty-four hours earlier. He immediately searched his pockets, front and back, and couldn’t find a thing to give Jesus.

By this time the offering plate was being passed down his aisle and, with a broken heart, he just grabbed the plate and held on to it. He finally let go and watched it pass on down the aisle. He turned around to see it passed down the aisle behind him.

And then his eyes remained glued on the plate as it was passed back and forth, back and forth all the way to the rear of the sanctuary.

Then he had an idea. This little nine year old boy, in front of God and everybody, got up out of his seat. He walked about eight rows back, grabbed the usher by the coat and asked to hold the plate one more time. Then he did the most astounding thing I have ever heard of. He took the plate, sat it on the carpeted church floor and stepped into the center of it.

As he stood there, he lifted his little head up and said, “Jesus, I don’t have anything to give you today, but just me. I give you me!”

November 2nd, 2008

God’s message can make the difference in the life of someone

The Pastor\'s son in rain

Every Sunday afternoon, after the morning service at the church, the Pastor and his eleven year old son would go out into their town and hand out Gospel Tracts. This particular Sunday afternoon, as it came time for the Pastor and his son to go to the streets with their tracts, it was very cold outside, as well as pouring down rain. The boy bundled up in his warmest and driest clothes and said,

‘OK, dad, I’m ready.’

His Pastor dad asked, ‘Ready for what?’

‘Dad, it’s time we gather our tracts together and go out.’

Dad responds, ‘Son, it’s very cold outside and it’s pouring down rain.’

The boy gives his dad a surprised look, asking,

‘But Dad, aren’t people still going to Hell, even though it’s raining?’

Dad answers, ‘Son, I am not going out in this weather’

Despondently, the boy asks, ‘Dad, can I go? Please?’

His father hesitated for a moment then said,

‘Son, you can go. Here are the tracts, be careful son.’

‘Thanks Dad!’

And with that, he was off and out into the rain. This eleven year old boy walked the streets of the town going door to door and handing everybody he met in the street a Gospel Tract. After two hours of walking in the rain, he was soaking, bone-chilled wet and down to his VERY LAST TRACT. He stopped on a corner and looked for someone to hand a tract to, but the streets were totally deserted.

Then he turned toward the first home he saw and started up the sidewalk to the front door and rang the door bell. He rang the bell, but nobody answered. He rang it again and again, but still no one answered He waited but still no answer. Finally, this eleven year old trooper turned to leave, but something stopped him.

Again, he turned to the door and rang the bell and knocked loudly on the door with his fist. He waited, something holding him there on the front porch! He rang again and this time the door slowly opened. Standing in the doorway was a very sad-looking elderly lady. She softly asked, ‘What can I do for you, son?’ With radiant eyes and a smile that lit up her world, this little boy said,

‘Ma’am, I’m sorry if I disturbed you, but I just want to tell you that *JESUS REALLY DOES LOVE YOU* and I came to give you my very last Gospel Tract which will tell you all about JESUS and His great LOVE.’

With that, he handed her his last tract and turned to leave.

She called to him as he departed. ‘Thank you, son! And God Bless You!’

Well, the following Sunday morning in church Pastor Dad was in the pulpit. As the service began, he asked, ‘Does anybody have testimony or want to say anything?’ Slowly, in the back row of the church, an elderly lady stood to her feet. As she began to speak, a look of glorious radiance came from her face, ‘No one in this church knows me. I’ve never been here before.

You see, before last Sunday I was not a Christian. My husband passed on some time ago, leaving me totally alone in this world. Last Sunday, being a particularly cold and rainy day, it was even more so in my heart that I came to the end of the line where I no longer had any hope or will to live. So I took a rope and a chair and ascended the stairway into the attic of my home.

I fastened the rope securely to a rafter in the roof, then stood on the chair and fastened the other end of the rope around my neck. Standing on that chair, so lonely and brokenhearted I was about to leap off, when suddenly the loud ringing of my doorbell downstairs startled me. I thought, ‘I’ll wait a minute, and whoever it is will go away.’

I waited and waited, but the ringing doorbell seemed to get louder and more insistent, and then the person ringing also started knocking loudly.

I thought to myself again, ‘Who on earth could this be? Nobody ever rings my bell or comes to see me.’ I loosened the rope from my neck and started for the front door, all the while the bell rang louder and louder.

When I opened the door and looked I could hardly believe my eyes, for there on my front porch was the most radiant and angelic little boy I had ever seen in my life. His SMILE, oh, I could never describe it to you!

The words that came from his mouth caused my heart that had long been dead, TO LEAP TO LIFE as he exclaimed with a cherub-like voice, ‘Ma’am, I just came to tell you that JESUS REALLY DOES LOVE YOU.’ Then he gave me this Gospel Tract that I now hold in my hand.

As the little angel disappeared back out into the cold and rain, I closed my door and read slowly every word of this Gospel Tract. Then I went up to my attic to get my rope and chair. I wouldn’t be needing them any more.

You see—I am now a Happy Child of the KING. Since the address of your church was on the back of this Gospel Tract, I have come here to personally say THANK YOU to God’s little angel who came just in the nick of time and by so doing, spared my soul from an eternity in hell.’

There was not a dry eye in the church And as shouts of praise and honor to THE KING resounded off the very rafters of the building, Pastor Dad descended from the pulpit to the front pew where the little angel was seated. He took his son in his arms and sobbed uncontrollably.

Probably no church has had a more glorious moment, and probably this universe has never seen a Papa that was more filled with love & honor for his son… Except for One.

——————————————————————

Our Father also allowed His Son to go out into a cold and dark world. He received His Son back with joy unspeakable, and as all of heaven shouted praises and honor to The King, the Father sat His beloved Son on a throne far above all principality and power and every name that is named.

Remember, God’s message CAN make the difference in the life of someone close to you.

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Matthew 10:32 says ‘Whoever acknowledges Me before men, I will acknowledge him before My Father in heaven. But whoever disowns Me before men, I will disown him before My Father in heaven”

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