Category: Appam – English

Jan 25 – TOWARD THE WALL!

“Then Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the Lord” (Isaiah 38:2).

The Scripture says, “Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall.” Further, Hezekiah, who turned his face toward the wall, looked up to God also and began to pray with tears. 

David says, “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; but we will remember the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 20:7).

The side to which you have turned reveals on whom you have placed your faith. Some people fix their faces towards themselves. They rely upon their self-knowledge and think that they can achieve anything with their talent, knowledge, strength and money.

Some people look up to their children and community. Some look up to those who come forward to help during the prevailing situations. Some people rely upon their beauty and some on their skills.

But, King Hezekiah did not turn towards any of these sides and turned towards the wall. Further, he began to pray “I have not placed my belief on anything else. I am looking at you alone.”

Dear children of God, have you ever turned towards the wall? Stand beside a wall and look at it. You will not be able to see anything else. Only the wall will be in your view. Similar to this, let God alone be there in yours.

King Hezekiah was sick and was nearing death, but even in that situation, he did not look up to the doctors or any other helpers but turned only towards the wall. He prayed to God with tears, and he received the answer immediately. God not only healed his sickness, but He also added fifteen years to his lifespan.    

King David says, “I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:1, 2).

Isaiah says, “They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, who trust in carved images, who say to the moulded images, you are our gods” (Isaiah 42:17). Dear children of God do not look at your self-strength. Do not look at your community Do not look at the situations. Turn towards the wall, look up to God and pray.

To meditate: “Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever” (Psalm 125:1).

Jan 24 – ZAREPHATH BELONGING TO SIDON!

“Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon and dwell there. See, I have commanded a widow there to provide for you” (I Kings 17:9).

The way God provides is surprising, and His guidance is wonderful. You will never face shortfalls when you pay heed to His truth. He is one to make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.

God looked at Elijah and said, “Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon.” Do you know, who the native of this town Sidon is? It is Jezebel who wanted to behead Elijah. The Scripture says that Jezebel is the daughter of Ethbaal, the King of Sidon (I Kings 16:31). It was a nation full of Baal worship and one which hated the prophets of God. God sent Elijah to that sort of place.

At times, God may send you as sheep amid wolves. You may even have to enter the den of the lions. Even at those times, you need not worry. The King of the Jews who is a lion stays with you.

This Sidon was the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Asher. Joshua gave Sidon to the tribe of the children of Asher as their share (Joshua 19:28). What was the blessing of Asher? It was rich in oil resources. In Deuteronomy 33:24, we read that Asher will dip his foot in oil.

Indeed, that widow of Zarephath was residing in a place rich in oil resources. But she possessed only a little quantity of oil in her container. Though living in an oil-rich nation, she did not have sufficient oil.

Today, many people live in places where blessings are available and where the oil of anointment is poured. Despite this, there is no blessing, no anointment and no oil in their lives. Though uninterrupted supply of water may flow in the falls of Courtalam no water could enter a closed bottle. In the same way, if the heart is not open, even if a rain of blessings pours down, not a single drop of it enters life.

Dear children of God, unopened rooms may be there in your life. Open every one of them now. Since God is with you, miracles will keep happening in the whole of your lifetime.      

To meditate: “…gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all” (Ephesians 1:22, 23).

Jan 23 – WOUNDS OF A FRIEND!

“Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But the kisses of an enemy are deceitful” (Proverbs 27:6).

Your real friends will always be pointing out your mistakes and errors with love. They will never make propaganda of the shortfalls. They will show true love and care in your growth. That is why, Solomon the wise says, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend.”

Even friendship has become selfish and business in this 20th century. Some people value friendship selfishly, and they say, ‘Let me get introduced to that person. If I get his friendship, I will develop in many ways.’ Such people boast in appearance and not in heart. Judas went up to Jesus and said, ‘Greetings, Rabbi.’ Saying this, he kissed Jesus. After this, he revealed his true self and betrayed Jesus Christ. Even today, many people behave in this way.

One who loves friendship should initially come forward to share the depth of his heart and love. The book titled “How to earn friends?” was sold in lakhs. In this book, the author writes, “You may earn a lot of friends running here and there for two years and by taking great efforts. But, if you show real love and care towards others, you can earn friends even bigger in number.”

Do you want to develop a friendship which you already have with a person? Spend more time with him. Inquire about his health and other things. Even if you do not find time to meet that person directly, keep on expressing your love towards him through letters or telephone. Ensure that the fire of love does not get extinguished.

Jesus Christ is coming to your home in search of you to reaffirm His friendship with you. Standing at the entrance, He is knocking the door. With love, He calls you saying, “If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come into him and dine with him” (Revelation 3:20). Did he not descend to earth, renouncing the Heavenly greatness, because of His love over you? Did He not turn into an ordinary man like us, with flesh and blood? Did He not take the form of a slave and carry the Cross? What can you give back to Him, in return to His friendliness of greatness?

In Tamil, there is an excellent song which explains the love of God. It goes this way. ‘Since your friendly promises never change, guide me in your path of love.’ While singing this song, one can understand the greatness of the friendship of God.

Dear children of God, give space and allow that friendship and love to fill your heart. 

To meditate: “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up” (I Corinthians 13:4).

Jan 22 – FRIENDSHIP!

“He who loves purity of heart and has grace on his lips, the king will be his friend” (Proverbs 22:11).

The wise one earns the best friends in this world. Friendship is essential to lead a successful life in the world.

Some years ago, there was an announcement in a magazine which said that whoever sends a correct definition for the word ‘Friendship’ will be awarded a valuable prize. From the thousands received, the one chosen as the best said, “A person who pities his friend and comes forward to help him when the world lets him down is the true fiend.”

Do you know what Jesus Christ will say if asked to define friendship? The Scripture says that the following will be His answer. “Greater love has no one than this than to lay down one’s life for his friends” (John 15:13). “By this, we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren” (I John 3:16).

If you want to learn about friendship, you have to learn it from Jesus Christ alone. In the Old Testament, we read that God remained as a friend to Abraham. Abraham was called “The Friend of God.” God strolled with Enoch. He spoke with Moses face to face. He called Daniel “Greatly Beloved.” Above everything, He descended to earth, chose twelve disciples and befriended them.

How did Jesus Christ reveal his friendliness? Even though He was a glorious King, He stayed with the disciples as an ordinary person by staying, eating and sleeping with them. He shared with the disciples, everything He came to know from the Father. When the Sadducees and the Pharisee came to find fault with the disciples, He did not let them down and advocated for them. In the end, as a mark of good friendship, He dedicated even His own life.

Dear children of God, do you want to build your home with wisdom? Erect Jesus Christ as the pillar there. Be friendly to others just as how Jesus Christ was with His disciples. Extend love to others in the same way as Jesus Christ extended the same to you. Begin your friendship from home. Then, reveal the same everywhere.

To meditate: “A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity” (Proverbs 17:17).

Jan 21 – CONSIDERING THE POOR!

“Blessed is he who considers the poor;The Lord will deliver him in time of trouble.The Lord will preserve him and keep him alive and he will be blessed on the earth;you will not deliver him to the will of his enemies” (Psalm 41:1, 2).

In the Sermon on the Mount in the New Testament, and the Psalms of the Old Testament, we can find details about around 120 blessed people both male and female.King David has written about the blessed who considered the poor in the 41st Psalm.

There were two phases in the life of King David. The first phase is during the time in which he was oppressed and was struggling for life hiding in hills and mountains. The second phase is the period in which he comforted and embraced the poor and needy after becoming the king.

Today, we can see oppressed people in all places. Many people ignore them even when they happen to meet them face to face. There is no mercy in them to lift or comfort the oppressed. But this Scripture portion clearly defines the blessings which the people who consider the poor will receive.

Firstly, one who considers the poor will get blessed. The word ‘blessed’ has the meanings ‘Divine Sanction’ and ‘Benison.’ The life of the blessed will be more prominent and filled with the divine presence. Dear children of God, will you consider the poor and receive that blessing?

Secondly, the Scripture says that the Lord will deliver him in time of trouble. God promises that when many get destroyed in disasters like heavy rain, storm, earthquakes etc.. He will save those who consider the poor.

Thirdly, God will protect them and keep them alive. Similar to how he protected David from the sharp teeth of a bear, to the roaring lion and the terrible Goliath, He will also protect those who consider the poor.

Fourthly, He will not deliver those who consider the poor, to the will of the enemy. He will ensure that no weapon formed against them shall prosper. Dear children of God always consider the poor.  

To meditate: “The Lord will strengthen him on his bed of illness; you will sustain him on his sickbed” (Psalm 41:3).

Jan 20 – I AM WILLING!

“Then Jesus put out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed” (Mathew 8:3).

The will of God is that you should get healed and you should be healthy. Only if you are hale and healthy, you will be able to fulfil all your responsibilities to your family and God.

That day a leper came to God and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” Nobody doubts God’s power to heal. But people doubt whether God is willing to heal. The Scripture says, “Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted…….by His stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:4, 5).

He bore the things which you should have. He carried all burdens which you should have. It is not at all necessary for you to repeat the same as He has already done these things on your behalf. As the penalty has been paid by Him already on your behalf, why should you pay the same again?

God experienced three types of sufferings. He, who did not know what sin is, became sin for your sake. So, you do not need to accept the punishment of sin. Secondly, He, who was healthy, bore the sickness for your sake. So, you do not need to carry the same. Thirdly, though He was rich, He became poor for your sake. So, you need not feel the burden of poverty.

During the Second World War, intensive bombing was there over London City every day. One person who did not sleep for the whole night due to fear opened the Bible. The verse which his eyes saw was “Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” This verse created faith in his heart.

He began to think this way. “God stays awake without sleeping for my sake and what am I going to do by staying awake?” and began to sleep peacefully. It is not at all necessary for both to stay awake or for both to carry the sickness.

Dear children of God, place your sickness and weakness on Him. He shall sustain you.            

To meditate: “When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick” (Mathew 8:16).

Jan 19 – MOUTHS OF LIONS!

“Who through faith…stopped the mouths of lions” (Hebrews 11:33).

Faith has the power of even overcoming the wild animals. Faith overcomes even the ferocious behavior and terrible characteristics of the roaring lions. The faith binds their mouths so that they could not harm.

When a servant of God, ministering in Africa, was crossing a forest, saw a roaring lion coming at a distance towards him. A sweet faith began to secrete from within him on seeing the lion. 

In a soft voice, he told the lion coming at a distance, “Dear Lion, God, who created you and me is the same. He alone is guiding you and me. We are part of the sweet family of the Heavenly Father. So, please do not harm me.” Then he said the Gods, “Oh, God of Daniel, and God who saved Daniel when he was thrown into the lion’s den, save me too.” The lion which came nearer did not do any harm and went away calmly. 

God has written the life history of Prophet Daniel only for our sake. What was the great faith in Daniel? He firmly believed that lions could never harm him. His faith was, “I am perfect in the eyes of God. I have also not committed any evil thing against the king. So, God will never let me down and allow these animals to trouble me.  

Since the king of the Jews is with me, I am closing the mouths of these worldly lions. They cannot harm me. God has promised me that I shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, and I shall trample the young lion and the serpent. So, these lions will not harm me.”

The king ordered to put Daniel in the lion’s den only because he had no other options. Even that king had a strong faith in his heart. That is why he came running in the morning to meet Daniel. Looking at the den with all hope he asked, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?” Yes. Both of them had a strong faith. So, God tied the mouths of the lions.

Dear children of God, He, who saw the faith of Daniel and did a miracle in his life, will also do the same in your life.   

To meditate: “You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot” (Psalm 91:13).

Jan 18 – IS NOT PROVOKED!

“Love…is not provoked” (I Corinthians 13:5).

Love will cover a multitude of sins. When the sins are covered, there is no space for hatred and anger. There will not be a sign of fight or separation. Love will rule divinely.

Once, the parents of a girl chose a wealthy boy as life partner to their daughter. But, after marriage, brutal nature of the boy got revealed. One day, he quarrelled with his wife, beat her terribly and went away. After a few hours, he returned home to see what had happened to his wife and to know whether she is alive or not. On entering the home, he was surprised to see food being kept ready for him on the dining table. His wife welcomed him with a smiling face expressing her gladness that he had returned home early and began to serve food to him.

After a few minutes of silence, he slowly asked, “I have beaten you too much. Is it not?” In reply, she said, “No. You did not beat me. You have hit yourself. My hand joined yours in the presence of God during our marriage. From that moment, my body has become that of yours.

God also has clearly said, “The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does” (I Corinthians 7:4). You are the head given to me by God, and I am your possession. You have every right to beat or trample me. Whatever you may do, God has given none other than you for me to show my love.” The husband, on hearing these words began to cry bitterly. That day, the family got bound with deep love. Whichever man wins the anger with love, he will always be victorious in all situations. A devotee said that anger is the symptom of defeat. He, who wins over anger is victorious.

To what a great extent, Jesus Christ experienced reproach, shame and mock! In addition to these things, He was beaten with sticks; nailed on the cross. Even in this situation, Jesus did not show anger. Instead, He prayed to the Father saying, “Father, forgive them.” That is the way to overcome anger.

When Jesus Christ was in this world, He asked His disciples several times to love each other. He cited Himself as an example of that. Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you” (John 15:12). Dear children of God, may you overcome anger with love.

To meditate: “Love does no harm to a neighbour; therefore love is the fulfilment of the law” (Romans 13:10).

Jan 17 – ACCORDING TO THE WILL!

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father in heaven” (Mathew 7:21).

It is easy to call “Lord, Lord.” But submitting fully to do the will of God is hard to follow. It is easier for one to say that I love God. But what is hard is to obey His commandments which God expects. It is easy to remain as believers. But what is hard is to surrender to do His will holistically.

Once, I was quoting from the Scripture to explain a sister the importance of receiving baptism, but she did not like to hear. She said, “I love God, and so, I will reach heaven.” Jesus said, “If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love” (John 15:10).

It is of no use to calling Him ‘Lord, Lord’ after failing to do His will. One who loves God has to get rid of all the sins that have to be got rid of. He has to carry out all the laws that are to be fulfilled. One should fully submit himself to the will of God and move ahead.

Once, the famous servant of God, Spurgeon went to a prison to do the ministry. When he asked the criminals there whether they believed God, they replied positively. They believed God but continued to live in sin, and it is because of this, they had to face the situation of staying in prison.

Look at Jonah. Indeed, he is a powerful servant of God. But when God asked him to go to Nineveh, he boarded a ship to move towards Tarshish, disobeying the will of God. Just think whether God accepted this. God created a turbulent sea in Jonah’s life. He prepared a fish, made it to swallow Jonah and taught him the importance of fulfilling the will of God.

The prayer of David was always as follows. “Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; Your Spirit is good. Lead me in the land of uprightness” (Psalm 143:10). Dear children of God, when you submit yourself to do the will of God, you will be found in the family of God. You will find a place in His fellowship. So, submit yourself to do the will of God.

To meditate: “…make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen” (Hebrews 13:21).

Jan 16 – HOLY INSTITUTION WHICH HE LOVES!

“For Judah has profaned the Lord’s holy institution which He loves: he has married the daughter of a foreign god” (Malachi 2:11).

A portion of this verse says “Lord’s holy institution which He loves” and you may meditate the same. At times, you love your children the most. You love particular friends the most. Some of your relatives move closely with you, and you stay affectionate with them. When something wrong happens to them, you become worried. When someone kidnaps a child whom you like a lot, it is something unbearable for you.

God says, “For Judah has profaned the Lord’s holy institution which He loves.” How sad His heart would have been! If at all God loves a characteristic, it is nothing but holiness. When the children of Israel were in Egypt, God feared that they should not get afflicted with the sinful characteristics of Egypt. So, He willed to bring them out of Egypt. God did this as He wanted His children to be a model for holiness. Yes. He did not require an impure group but require a pure group.

He is a holy God. He also turns you holy. God said, “And you shall be holy to me, for I the Lord am holy, and have separated you from the people, that you should be mine” (Leviticus 20:26). It is the will and wish of God that you should live in holiness which He likes. Lord God alone stays as an example of holiness for you to follow.

One day the eyes of Isaiah met God. The beauty of holiness in God touched him. Unknowingly he began to cry and said, “I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips.” When the light and revelation of such a need comes into you, holiness and the desire over the same will enter you unknowingly. The live coal which made Isaiah holy should touch your tongue also and make your words holy.

Jesus Christ said, “Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect” (Mathew 5:48). Dear children, it is possible for you to live holy. God has noted the ways and means to achieve it, in the Scripture. He has shown you the example. Let your eyes keep on looking at the holy God.

To meditate: “he who is holy, let him be holy still …….and behold, I am coming quickly” (Revelation 22:11, 12).