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October 18th, 2008

Story : I will NOT send blank pages up to God’s majestic throne

The Throne You see when You reach heaven

I dreamed I was in heaven
Where an angel kept God’s book.
He was writing so intently
I just had to take a look.

It was not, at first, his writing
That made me stop and think
But the fluid in the bottle
That was marked eternal ink.

This ink was most amazing,
Dark black upon his blotter
But as it touched the parchment
It became as clear as water.

The angel kept on writing,
But as quickly as a wink
The words were disappearing
With that strange eternal ink.

The angel took no notice,
But kept writing on and on.
He turned each page and filled it
Till all its space was gone.

I thought he wrote to no avail,
His efforts were so vain
For he wrote a thousand pages
That he’d never read again.

And as I watched and wondered that
This awesome sight was mine,
I actually saw a word stay black
As it dried upon the line.

The angel wrote and I thought I saw
A look of satisfaction.
At last he had some print to show
For all his earnest action.

A line or two dried dark and stayed
As black as black can be,
But strangely the next paragraph
Became invisible to see.

The book was getting fuller,
The angel’s records true,
But most of it was blank, with
Just a few words coming through.

I knew there was some reason,
But as hard as I could think,
I couldn’t grasp the significance
Of that eternal ink.

The mystery burned within me,
And I finally dared to ask
The angel to explain to me
Of his amazing task.

And what I heard was frightful
As the angel turned his head.
He looked directly at me,
And this is what he said…

I know you stand and wonder
At what my writing’s worth
But God has told me to record
The lives of those on earth.

The book that I am filling
Is an accurate account
Of every word and action
And to what they do amount.

And since you have been watching
I must tell you what is true;
The details of my journal
Are the strict accounts of YOU.

The Lord asked me to watch you
As each day you worked and played.
I saw you as you went to church,
I saw you as you prayed.

I saw you when you met the Lord
when you were saved from sin
I rejoiced with all the angels
That you would soon move in

But how would you arrive?
What gifts would you bring?
On that great day in life
When you stood before the King.

So I was told to document
Your life through all the week.
I wrote when you were proud and bold,
I wrote when you were meek.

I recorded all your attitudes
Whether they were good or bad.
I was sorry that I had to write
The things that make God sad.

So now I’ll tell the wonder
Of this eternal ink,
For the reason for its mystery
Should make you stop and think.

This ink that God created
To help me keep my journal
Will only keep a record of
Things that are eternal.

So much of life is wasted
On things that matter not
So instead of my erasing,
Smudging ink and ugly blot.

I just keep writing faithfully and
Let the ink do all the rest
For it is able to decide
What’s useless and what’s best.

And God ordained that as I write
Of all you do and say
Your deeds that count for nothing
Will just disappear away.

When books are opened someday,
As sure as heaven is true;
The Lord’s eternal ink will tell
What mattered most to you.

If you just lived to please yourself
The pages will be bare,
And God will issue no reward
For you when you get there.

In fact, you’ll be embarrassed,
You will hang your head in shame
Because you did not give yourself
In love to Jesus’ Name.

Yet maybe there will be a few
Recorded lines that stayed
That showed the times you truly cared,
Sincerely loved and prayed.

But you will always wonder
As you enter heaven’s door
How much more glad you would have been
If only you’d done more.

For I record as God sees,
I don’t stop to even think
Because the truth is written
With God’s eternal ink.

When I heard the angel’s story
I fell down and wept and cried
For as yet I still was dreaming
I hadn’t really died.

And I said: O angel tell the Lord
That soon as I awake
I’ll live my life for Jesus-
I’ll do all for His dear sake.

I’ll give in full surrender;
I’ll do all He wants me to;
I’ll turn my back on self and sin
And whatever isn’t true.

And though the way seems long and rough
I promise to endure.
I’m determined to pursue the things
That are holy, clean and pure.

With Jesus as my helper,
I will win lost souls to Thee,
For I know that they will live with Christ
For all eternity.

And that’s what really matters
When my life on earth is gone
That I will stand before the Lord
And hear Him say, well done.

For is it really worth it
As my life lies at the brink?
And I realize that God keeps books
With His eternal ink.

Should all my life be focused
On things that turn to dust?
From this point on I’ll serve the Lord;
I can, I will, I must!

I will NOT send blank pages
Up to God’s majestic throne
For where that record’s going now
Is my eternal home.

I’m giving all to Jesus
I now have seen the link
For I saw an angel write my life
With God’s eternal ink.!

—-  Craig F. Pitts

October 17th, 2008

Story : How Much My Little Girl Loves Me

Father and Daughter

A Painful childhood memory becomes a door to faith and the knowledge of the healing love of God.

Note: This story was taken from a letter written by an attendee of the Sonship Week conference for pastors and their wives.

The Holy Spirit really dealt with my husband and me at the Sonship Week conference in answer to many prayers. As good as theology and teaching technique are, it is the Holy Spirit alone who goes down deep inside. He tears down the idols and pride and replants the simplicity of faith in Christ. I don’t know whether we really believed that God meant what He said when He made all His promises, but I am sure I still wouldn’t have begun to believe how near, willing, and able the Spirit is to meet us and transform us, if I hadn’t experienced His coming to me last week.

I was so helpless to respond to what you and Jeff, our counselor, were saying. Really, I still am. But I’m beginning to understand our fellowship — our partnership with God through the Holy Spirit — that He wants to help me live for Him. In fact to want to go it alone grieves Him and treats as insignificant the One who Jesus said He’d send so we would not be orphans. I realized that my greatest sin was unbelief and so lightly esteeming all God has given me in Christ.

When I was very young my older sister was hanging up my father’s white business shirts on the clothesline to dry. I was suddenly filled with the urge to hang up one of my daddy’s white shirts. I’m not sure I can explain my motive. He was my daddy too, and I was his daughter. I loved him in my childlike way and wanted to express it. I couldn’t reach the clothesline — it was too high, but I saw a wheel barrow in the yard and its handles were just the right height for me. I didn’t notice how rusty it was and I rather joyfully clothes pinned the wet shirt to the handles.

When my dad got home and saw the shirt on the wheel barrow he became very angry with me and punished me severely for ruining his shirt.

I hadn’t realized the impact that event and others like it had made on me. But as I was repeatedly convicted during the Sonship conference for not believing God concerning His delight in me and in the gracious nature of my relationship with Him now that He has put me into Christ, this memory returned to me. Now, you can’t get through 24 hours of a Sonship conference without realizing that your own heart is as murderous as anyone else’s — so I wasn’t primarily focusing on only being the innocent victim of my father’s cruel anger.

As I remembered these scenes from the past I saw that through the years I had not been believing that my Father in heaven was any different than my earthly father. I hadn’t been, listening when He described Himself. In short, I hadn’t been believing the Gospel, that by faith in Christ and His perfect atoning sacrifice, now He loves me and is forever for me and delighted in me. In Christ He has made me beautiful and pleasing to Him forever.

So the next morning I told our counselor, Jeff, that I thought I was beginning to understand. I told him the memory and said that I guess if the Father saw me standing next to the wheel barrow with the ruined shirt on it, He would forget the shirt and hug me. “You still don’t understand fully,” he said, “God would not overlook the shirt, but take it, put it on, and wear it to work. And when someone commented on the rust marks, He would say, ‘Let me tell you about my little girl and how much she loves me.

I was overwhelmed with that realization.

I am beginning to realize that my Christian life has been a continual effort to earn God’s pleasure by getting “the shirts hung up right.” God would answer if my prayer was “right.” God would smile upon me if my theology was correct. And since I knew how I had failed day by day in my works, I sort of snuck them up on the line and tried to be away when God got home, so to speak. Someone at the conference had said something that really seems to apply here. He said: “God will not despise the tainted love-gifts of the sinner who looks to Jesus.” My entire Christian life had been oppressive. I did not know how to live day by day without an overwhelming sense of failure to perform up to what I thought God demanded. With that came a sense of God being disappointed and even disgusted with me.

How overpowering it is now to realize that because of Christ, I can experience a daily freedom to move out into people’s lives. I can love others, I can obey God with my heart because I don’t fear that He will be furious with me if I get the shirt “a bit rusty.” There is a freedom to love that I haven’t known since the moments before my father got home that day long ago.

October 14th, 2008

St. Alphonsa Prayers

St Alphonsa India

Prayer of Saint Alphonsa:-

O Lord Jesus,

Hide me in the wound of your sacred heart.
Free me from my desire to be loved and esteemed.
Guard me from my evil attempts to win fame and honor.
Make me humble till I become a small spark in the flame of love in your Sacred Heart.
Grant me the grace to forget myself and all worldly things.
Jesus, sweet beyond words, convert all worldly consolations into bitterness for me.
O my Jesus, Sun of Justice, enlighten my intellect and mind with your sacred rays. Purify my heart, consume me with burning love for you, and make me one with you.
Amen

Novena of Saint Alphonsa:

CLICK HERE to get Novena of Saint Alphonsa in Malayalam language.

Prayer to Saint Alphonsa:-

Oh, Saint Alphonsa, you have been graciously chosen from our midst to be united with Jesus Christ, our savior, in the misery of his passion, death and resurrection. You have grown to the heights of holiness and have been crowned with heavenly glory.

Help us in our trials and tribulations. Oh! Daughter of sufferings, obtain for us the grace to lead a holy life, following your example, in total submission to the will of God. Be with us, transforming all our sorrows into a holy sacrifice in union with Christ Crucified, in reparation to our sins, for the sanctification and salvation of the whole world.
Amen

Prayer for the intercession of Saint Alphonsa:-

O, Holy Spirit, descend upon us. Pour out your gifts upon us and strengthen us in faith. Guide us with the hope for the kingdom of heaven. Enkindle our hearts with the fire of divine love. Just as you led Saint Alphonsa along the path of sanctity, lead us also on the path of righteousness. Grant us the grace to grow in sanctity and wisdom, by serving you faithfully in humility and gentleness.

Celebrant : With joy and hope in our hearts, let us pray: “Lord, hear our prayer”.

All : Lord, hear our prayer.

Celebrant : Lord, you raised Sr. Alphonsa to the host of the Blessed, fill us with the spirit of prayer and sacrifice.

All : Lord, hear our prayer.

Celebrant : Lord, grant us the grace to seek the hand of god in all our sufferings and sorrows, like St. Alphonsa who bore witness to you through her sufferings and self-sacrifice.

All : Lord, hear our prayer.

Celebrant : Lord Jesus, you offered yourself as a victim on the cross for us sinners. St. Alphonsa imitated you by offering herself as a victim on your alter. Grant us the strength and grace to offer ourselves to you every moment, as a burnt offering, like this holy sister.

All : Lord, hear our prayer.

Celebrant : Lord Jesus, at the moment of your death agony, your prayer to the father saying: “Not my will, but they will be done”. St. Alphonsa also imitated you praying in the same fashion. Help us to see you in our superiors and do your will in all circumstances.

All : Lord, hear our prayer.

Let us pray

Merciful and benevolent God, we offer ourselves completely to you. We give you thanks for all the blessings you shower upon us. Forgive us our sins and offences. Lord, you gave us St. Alphonsa as our model and mediator. We seek her intercession now. Protect us from all evils, spiritual and material. Fill us with your blessings. We make this prayer in your name, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Amen.

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