Message of the Month

                                          “Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts:
                                                            ”Consider your ways!                                                                                                                                                                 
 “You have sown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough;
                You drink, but you are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm;
                               and he who earns wages, earns wages to put into a   bag with holes.”

                                                                                                    Haggai 1:5-6.

Dearly beloved in Christ,

Greetings to you in the sweet name of Jesus Christ!

We strive hard to progress, to improve our status and qualification, to earn more, and to have  prosperity and fullness of blessings in life. It may be agriculture, business, or small enterprises. Whatever it might be, we plan to come up in private life or in government employment. We want to increase our income and decrease the expenses.

An agriculturist wants to sow less, but to have a huge harvest. A businessman wants to increase his earnings through greater gain. Even small investors want to have huge profits. In spite of all their plans and efforts, everything goes in vain. There is loss, disappointments and defeats. What is the reason for that? “Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: ”Consider your ways!  ”You have sown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough; You drink, but you are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; And he who earns wages, Earns wages to put into a bag with holes” (Haggai 1:5-6). Yes, you have to examine our ways.

Dear Brother/ Sister, how is your way? Consider it a while. Is it a way of sins? Are you on your way to destruction through any evil spirit drifting you away? Are you really following the way of Jesus Christ, who said, “I am the Way” and enjoying peace in its fullness.

If there are obstacles in your way to progress in the form of loss, destruction, or defeat in your efforts in spite of your intense efforts, there may be a defect in your way. In my life I strived hard to earn more and took a lot of efforts. I did various types of business, but all in vain. The Bible teaches: “Consider your ways!  “You have sown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough . . .” Dear Brother, consider your ways. You have invested a lot in business, but the return is not equal to your investment and effort. Do not keep blaming the time or situation or place. Do not cheat yourself blaming these things. It is the sin that is in you that is robbing you of all gain, success and progress.

Sinful Way

I know a friend. He had a large heart. He would like to please everyone. He started a good store in a good business centre. He invested a lot in it. Everything went on well. It prospered and he earned a lot. Now he was full of joy and he started drinking along with his friends after business hours in the very same place. Some days passed off. Now he began to incur loss. To make up, he took his friends as shareholders in the business. In the end, the shop was transferred to his friend. He lost his business. He worked hard; he did everything using his intelligence. But his sinful habit made him lose everything.

Dear friend, are you wasting your wealth in sinful habits in your business the Lord has graciously given you? Do you waste your money in debauchery and revelry? If you spend your time in evil habits in the place where you earn your living, your life would become sore and detestable. Today put a full-stop to your sinful habits, and turn from your ways. You will save yourself from loss and worries.

In Haggai, we read that some earn only to put it into bags with holes. He does not enjoy what he earns.

I know a doctor’s family, who earned a lot. But they did not possess a good house for themselves. Not to speak of cars and other luxuries. All their earnings went for paying interest and other dissipative expenditure. They were always in debt. They did not walk in the way of the Lord, but lived as it pleased them. All their earnings were as if put a bag with holes. They vanished in no time. But once they accepted the way of the Lord and began to live accordingly, they were blessed so abundantly that they always were left with extra earnings. It was the Lord’s doing.

Dear Brother / Sister, why should all your hard labour and efforts go in vain? Do you spend a lot on interest, treatment of diseases, wasteful expenses of children living in sin, revelry and debauchery of the husband, cinema, and ostentatious living? The reason why you are not able to live in the house you have bought or enjoy your own properties is your sins, the wickedness you practised. Do not forget that. Look back at the way you lived. Relent for the mistakes you made. The sin of omissions, not doing your duties to your family and parents, the unrighteous and deceitful practices in coveting the properties of others and such other things might stand in your way. Be remorseful for what you have done to others wickedly. Your sins would destroy and eliminate your wealth and properties. If you commit to live according to the way of the Lord Jesus Christ who said, “I am the Way”, He will bless your earnings.

Perverse Way

‘And the Angel of the Lord said to him, “Why have you struck your donkey these three times? Behold, I have come out to stand against you, because your way is perverse before Me.’ (Num. 22:32)

Many today take to their own ways deviating from the way of the Lord. In their lives the hand of the Lord would work against them. In the lives of those who disregard the Word of God and go away from it, there would be all kinds of reproach, shame and obstacles.

Balaam was a man of God who disregarded the word of the Lord and went ahead to curse the people of God according to his own desire. For that he received the invitation and was on his way riding on a donkey. The donkey refused to go ahead. He beat it, but that did not help him. Then the Lord opened the mouth of the donkey to point to the foolishness of the man of God. The angel pointed to him that the hand of the Lord was against him.

Dear Brother, today if you do things that are abominable to the Lord, all your efforts will go in vain. It will help only to multiply your woes. Once, a family came with tears to pray for their daughter who would strip herself of her clothes and begin to run in the street. During prayer, the Lord gave a vision of a small amulet containing a metal piece with something written being buried at the junction of streets. I enquired them about it and asked them why they did it. They said that they had a quarrel with their neighbours and they did it to protect them from any evil works of that family. The neighbours were also devout Christians. As they did this evil against the children of God, the hand of the Lord was against them. What they considered to be protection became the very thing that worked against them. They disregarded the teaching of Jesus Christ: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God” (Matt. 5:7). What they did worked against them and they were put shame. 

Dear Brother / Sister, do not fret even if you are among people who are envious of you in business, in job, in marriage, or anything else. The Lord would not forsake you. He will exalt you and anoint you among your enemies as He did in the case of Joseph and will bless and honour you. Do not go astray from the path of the Lord. In the perverse way there would be thorns and thistles.

Way of Disobedience

““Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it; for their wickedness has come up before Me.” But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa, and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.” (Jonah 1:2-3).

The reason for boisterous turmoil in the lives of people is their disobedience to the word of the Lord. They do not heed to what the Lord says. Because Jonah disobeyed the word of the Lord and went to Tarshish instead of going to Nineveh, his journey was hampered by a turbulent ocean. Not only he, all those in the ship were tormented and were in peril.

Today when you attempt to do something without heeding to what the Lord says, you would meet with failure and harm.

Once, a woman came to pray for her daughter’s admission to a college. They wanted to know whether they could admit her to an institution in a different place. After prayer I told her not to admit her there. They did not abide by it but chose to admit her there. After a few days, they got the call letter from the institution in their own place. Now they changed the institution, but they incurred a heavy loss in terms of money. It is all because of not heeding to the word of the Lord.

Once a man wanted to go abroad to earn and settle all the debts here. He came for advice and prayer. I told him to continue to work as a teacher, but to seek the Lord with the whole heart and then the Lord would help him settle everything in a short time. But he was not prepared to accept the idea. The thought that he could earn a lot abroad and settle all his debt was uppermost in him. He took the ticket and visa for the country. He had taken a loan for building the house; now he took more loans to go abroad. But he could work there only for a short time. He had to come back to his place. The man who loaned money took the house for the money given. He had lost his wife and now had no house to live in with his two daughters. Thereafter, he too died in Corona attack. The children were left alone to fend for themselves with no house or possessions.

Going Astray from the Lord

“And not many days after, the younger son gathered all together, journeyed to a far country, and there wasted his possessions with prodigal living.” (Luke 15:13)

Many today live a life akin to that of the younger brother of the parable of the Prodigal Son. They want to live as they like and do not want to be instructed by members of the family. They get their share of the ancestral property and leave the family. They yield themselves to sinful ways and at the end lose everything they have. Only after losing everything they have, their status, honour, exaltation, and their regard in the family and society, they come to their senses. Then they realize their mistake and seek fellowship with others.

When we go astray from the Lord’s way and live according to the dictates of our heart, there would certainly be loss, harm and destruction. When we go away from our heavenly Father the Lord Jesus Christ, all our blessings as His children like health, strength, and wisdom would be lost. There would only be agony and agitation. He would not add pain to the riches that He gives. You may eat good food and yet lack blood. You may have low blood pressure. Dear Brother/ Sister, commit to live with the Lord. He will transform all the agonies you undergo. Dear child of God, are you baffled by the disease you have in spite of your taking good food? Do consider your ways. Also commit to live in fellowship with the Lord. He will do great things and bless you.

The Way of Death

“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” (Proverbs 16:25)

There are people who strive, plan, scheme, and calculate everything to be successful and to achieve fame and name. In spite of all that they do, they miserably fail to accomplish anything. They end in disaster and death.

Once a team was to play in a tournament at Trichy. They had planned to go in the early morning. But one of them insisted on travelling during night saying it was the auspicious time. So they travelled by taxi at night. But that car met with an accident. The man who insisted that it was the auspicious time lost his life. What appeared to be good became a death-trap.

Many people today plan and execute them thinking that it is good. Many years ago, the students of an engineering college in Trichy planned to spend their vacation happily at a sea-shore. They were happily spending their time on the sea-shore standing in water or nearby. But a boisterous wave that came quite unexpectedly swallowed them and took them into the sea. Six of them died of suffocation. They had plans to enjoy their vacation, but it ended in tragedy.

Dear Brother/ Sister in tears as a result of loss, defeats, and disappointments, realize the cause that has brought about this misfortune in life. Is it not your sins or disobedience to the word of the Lord or your going away from the Lord?

The Lord who loves you wants to amend you and your ways. “Oh, that My people would listen to Me, that Israel would walk in My ways!” (Psalm 81:13). He will show you the way you should go. There is nothing more blessed than this. If only you commit to live in His way, He will guide you and take you along in a perfect way. You need not be worried about your future as to how and what to do. He will teach you His way. You will not be led astray by worldly people.

When you commit your way to the way of the Lord, He will make thing happen. “Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass” (Psalm 37:5). Dear Brother, are you worried that you are unsuccessful? The Lord is sure to crown you with victory. “Truly, in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, And from the multitude of mountains; Truly, in the Lord our God

Is the salvation of Israel” (Jeremiah 3:23). Whatever maybe the field where you have been unsuccessful – might be studies, business or job. Commit to live in the way of Jesus Christ, you would have success in your life.

Only to give you a blessed life, Jesus came to this earth and went about doing good, and gave His very life on the cross. By the blood He shed on the cross, all our sins, the trespassing of disobedience, and perverse acts of abomination will be wiped out. We are exalted to be blessed to live with Him.

The Lord who judges according to our ways lives. He said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.” He desires that we should walk in His ways according to His words. Would you listen to His words? Consider your ways. Commit to live according to His words. The Lord will do great things and make things happen and your efforts flourish. As Daniel was successful in his life, your life will also be filled with success, joy and peace.

Let us commit our lives to live according to the way of the Lord. Let our lives be acceptable to Him we will be led in a wonderful way and blessed.

May the Lord bless us all!

In the service of Christ Jesus,

Bro. C. Ebenezer Paul