Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Center of Gravity | Story behind the song

Song by Lasya V

I wrote this song as a celebration of what God has been and done for me. A ‘centre of gravity’ is a point from which the weight of a body or system may be considered to act. I couldn’t think of a better description of the role of Jesus in my life.
 When He is my center of gravity, I gain his perspective. He gives me purpose and the boldness to act on it. Jesus’ perspective is so different from ours because He sees himself in every broken reality because He is the hope for every situationShame came into my life through many sources but He stood as a rock defending me.
 I wanted this song to be filled with hope because he does redeem the years the locusts have eaten. He had restored a relationship in my life that had nearly died and I had begun to see that promise unfold in my own life. It was in that season of joy that I looked back and realized that He would never let go of me. 
So before something else would overwhelm me, I wanted to build a testimony of His faithfulness through this song. And finally, the bridge is both a declaration and an invitation into this relationship with a relentlessly good Father.

Centre of Gravity- Capo 5 C (F)

C                                 Csus
You are my center of gravity
You're the fire in my veins
                  F                     G
You're the light of endless days

C                               Csus

You see the broken reality
But your eyes are full of faith
                 F                      G
For your death was no mistake

Em           Am            C
Jesus my wondrous savior
You wear down shame
On the rock of grace
Em           Am            C
You're a relentless father
Am                        F
You don't give up hope
On the lives that you hold


C                                    Csus
You're the redeemer of everything
From the years of loss and grief
              F                   G
To that promised destiny
C                               Csus
You see the end from the beginning
And your purposes prevail
          F                      G
Victory is in your name

                    C                       F
He’s the king- like no other king
                    C                  G
He’s the son - who will return
               Am                           Em
He’s the one - we have been waiting for
F                            Em
You are our hope - Your name is love
C                        Csus
Come know him now

©Lasya Vyakaranam March 2018


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

So how shall we live now? | Colin D

This message was preached  by Colin D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on April 15th , 2018. To listen/download the audio please click here

There was a time many years ago where people said Jesus is coming soon and lived irresponsibly. People are very intrigued about Jesus’ return.

Q. What does God say about his return and what is our response?

Matt 24:36- 39 ““But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[f] but only the Father. 37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

First thing is the Jesus is definitely coming back. But we are not called to speculate when he comes back because no one knows.

Q. So does it matter how we live?

Philippians 1:21 – 23For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23 I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far
Paul is saying that to be with Jesus is gain and is far better than anything on this earth. But in the interim, how shall we live?

Matthew 25:
“14For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. 15 To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away.

This is in the context of his return.  One talent is a lot of money- it was approximately 20 years’ wages. He gave it to them each according to his ability. Everyone doesn’t get something equal.

“16 He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. 17 So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. 18 But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money.”
We have different responses to this money the master has given them. So the 2 workers were very diligent. The third one just dug a hole and kept it.

19 Now after a long time, the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. 20 And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here, I have made five talents more.’ 21 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’

The master commends the character of the servant. The servant was faithful with a lot of money from his perspective. But it was little to the master's eyes. In Luke, it says, people who were faithful with their minas, were given cities to rule. The reward is far more than what they have laboured with.

22 And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me two talents; here, I have made two talents more.’ 23 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’ 24 He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed, 25 so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here, you have what is yours.’ 26 But his master answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? 27 Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. 28 So take the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. 29 For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. 30 And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

Q. How did the master respond to the one who had one talent?

He was reprimanded. He spoke about his character as well. There was punishment. His talent was taken and given to the one who had 10.

Q. How can we apply this parable to our lives?

These are the words of Jesus talking about the kingdom of Heaven. This is how it is going to be like at his second coming. Jesus is the master and the servants are people who have been entrusted with something.

Q. What are we entrusted with?

1.      They can be spiritual gifts- prophecy, evangelism, leading, giving, tongues... there are all kinds of gifts. The Holy Spirit gives according to his will.
2.      Skills and abilities- art, music, public speaking, etc. Jesus has given us all of these.
3.      Time and opportunities have been given to us. We don’t know how much time we have.
4.      Assets- money, vehicles, houses, etc. everything that we own has also been given to us by God.

While we are on earth we have to multiply all these things. God wants you to increase what you have. Jesus gives us this parable to motivate us to godly productive living. We can think we are not losing what God has given and that is enough. But there is no neutral in the kingdom. He who does not gather, scatters. We have to learn from the 2 servants who took the talents at once and multiplied them.

Q. What did the unfaithful servant do?

Verse 24-  He had a wrong understanding of the master. The master was generous and not a hard man. He accused him of being a thief. He rewarded the other 2 servants amazingly. In the same way we can have a wrong understanding of God. Salvation is an opportunity to put our talents to work so we can bring glory to God and Jesus can reward us.

Q. What are the talents God has given you?

Have you done something with the talents God has given you? Recognise your talents and do something with it. Rev 22:12Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay each one for what he has done.”

In Phil 3:20 Paul writes about the second coming saying “But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.

But while we are waiting here, we need to work for the Kingdom. Titus 2:11- 14For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, 12 training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, 13 waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.”

In Matthew 7 he talks about 2 types of people:
1.      Professors- those who say Lord, Lord, but He never knew them.
2.      Possessors- those who knew Him.

One way we can confirm we are possessors of eternal life is by the fruit we produce.
God wants to reward you much beyond what we have today in this life and in the life to come. Do something! Jesus is coming back and is going to take an account of what we have done.

Let’s pray!

  Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org. 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Where will you spend eternity? | Colin D

This message was preached  by Colin D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on Easter Morning, April 1st, 2018. To listen/download the audio please click here.

The resurrection is the greatest event in history. Even the death of Jesus is viewed through the lens of his resurrection.

Matthew 28:6He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.

Revelation 1:18 “I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.

Acts 2:24 “But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.

Romans 10:9- “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Acts 2:32- “God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of it.

Acts 4:10then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed.

So many scriptures speak about Jesus’ resurrection from the dead and that is what we are celebrating this morning.

Q. How important is the resurrection?

It is the greatest event in History because it determines where you and I will be a 100 years from now. Look around you- do you know that we are eternal beings. We are going to live forever. Every human being will live forever- either in heaven or in hell. We will be glorified bodies. Our belief in the resurrection will determine where we spend eternity.
Matthew 28:1-10After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.2 There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4 The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.5 The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.”8 So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.””

On the Sabbath the Jews do no work. Everything is shut. Even pressing a button on the lift is considered work. So the lift automatically goes from floor to floor. It was very important. So, the Ladies left the tomb on Friday night and came back Sunday morning.

There was a violent earthquake. This is the first supernatural thing happened. The angel rolled the stone back- it wasn’t for Jesus to get out, it was for the ladies to get in. We know that the angel was a powerful presence from God. The Roman guards were ferocious and strong and no one dared to mess with them. But they saw the angel and were terrified. They shook and fell to the ground.

The angel’s first words were- do not be afraid. They went into the tomb and saw Jesus’ clothes lying there. The women must have been full of joy seeing and hearing what the angel had to say. So, they were afraid yet filled with joy. If we believe the resurrection, we will be filled with joy.

Q. How do we know they were filled with joy?

They ran to tell the disciples. These are older women, who were so filled with joy that they ran.

In their great desire and joy to proclaim the resurrection of Jesus, they met him. When they met him, he just said, hi! When we see the resurrected Jesus, the only response is to worship him.

Even when he met the disciples, they didn’t believe him, so he asked for something to eat. Then Thomas also checks if he is the real Jesus. Later he is convinced and says, ‘my 
Lord and my God’.

Some people say that Jesus did not die, but if Jesus did not die, our sins are not taken away. Some say the disciples stole the body. Disciples were not brave men. A roman seal was placed on the tomb. Breaking a roman seal is punishable by death. All the disciples were martyred and till their dying day they said Jesus is alive. Jesus is raised from the dead.

Q. What difference does it make to us that Jesus was raised from the dead?

1 Corinthians 15:16 – 1916 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied

If Jesus has not been raised, there is no hope for us. We are still in our sins and we will die in our sins. Paul had a successful life. Then one day he met the risen Lord, and from then, he became the persecuted. He was beaten and stoned. He writes that we are living from the resurrection from the dead. “But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.” We are the following fruits who will come to life one day. Our bodies are like a seed. The seed looks nothing like the tree or the fruit. Paul is saying the same thing in 1 Corinthians 15-35 But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body will they come?” 36 How foolish! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. 37 When you sow, you do not plant the body that will be, but just a seed, perhaps of wheat or of something else. 38 But God gives it a body as he has determined, and to each kind of seed he gives its own body. 39 Not all flesh is the same: People have one kind of flesh, animals have another, birds another and fish another. 40 There are also heavenly bodies and there are earthly bodies; but the splendor of the heavenly bodies is one kind, and the splendor of the earthly bodies is another. 41 The sun has one kind of splendor, the moon another and the stars another; and star differs from star in splendor. 42 So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; 43 it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; 44 it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.”

Our hope is that we will be placed in the earth like a seed and will be raised to life again. If there is anyone this morning who has not yet put their trust in Jesus, today is the day of salvation.

Q. If you didn’t believe in Jesus, would your life be any different from what it is today?

Our lives must be different. If you watch any of those action serials, there is a hero who goes through a lot of challenges. There is threat to his life every day. But if you are watching season 4, and there is season 5,6 and 7, you know he is not going to die right now. That should be our confidence. There is more to come, so we have no fear of death. It is not the end. We will be with Jesus forever and ever.

In Jesus we have the hope of heaven- where there is no more death, sickness and pain. Because he lives, we also will live!

  Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Fighting Discouragement | Wellington G

This message was preached  by Wellington Gomes at Word of Grace Church on March 25th, 2018. Wellington has been a friend of Word of Grace Church for many years. He leads the River of Life Church in Panjim, Goa that belong to the NewFrontiers sphere 'Commission'. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.

We are going to look at the book of Nehemiah and I want to talk to you about how to deal with discouragement. It is one of Satan’s biggest weapons. We are called to rise up and do what God has called us to do. We all get trapped into discouragement, but we will look at how to get out of it.

Whenever you have a dream from God, the first thing that hits us is problems. Joseph had to go through a huge process before his promise was fulfilled. At first, we get excited about the thing God has called us to do. Then we get discouraged. Then we blame someone. The innocent gets punished and the wrong people get appreciated.
Nehemiah heard from 2 of his guys that the wall of Jerusalem is in a bad shape. He is burdened with this thing. So he made a huge plan to rebuild the walls. The walls are a protection and an identity. So when the wall is destroyed, it means that they were disgraced. Nehemiah builds this at a miracle pace of 52 days. Everyone who has made it big has made it because he persevered through problems. Everyone goes through a struggle.

Nehemiah 2: 17-20Then I said to them, “You see the trouble we are in: Jerusalem lies in ruins, and its gates have been burned with fire. Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace.” 18 I also told them about the gracious hand of my God on me and what the king had said to me. They replied, “Let us start rebuilding.” So they began this good work. 19 But when Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite official and Geshem the Arab heard about it, they mocked and ridiculed us. “What is this you are doing?” they asked. “Are you rebelling against the king?”20 I answered them by saying, “The God of heaven will give us success. We his servants will start rebuilding, but as for you, you have no share in Jerusalem or any claim or historic right to it.””

The God of heaven will give us success. But these guys did not give up.

Nehemiah 4: 1-3When Sanballat heard that we were rebuilding the wall, he became angry and was greatly incensed. He ridiculed the Jews, 2 and in the presence of his associates and the army of Samaria, he said, “What are those feeble Jews doing? Will they restore their wall? Will they offer sacrifices? Will they finish in a day? Can they bring the stones back to life from those heaps of rubble—burned as they are?”3 Tobiah the Ammonite, who was at his side, said, “What they are building—even a fox climbing up on it would break down their wall of stones!””

Discouragement comes in these ways:

1.      Words: People are going to say things to discourage us. When I became a Christian, people ridiculed and challenged me that I will not last more than 5 years in my Christianity. It’s been 30 years and I am as passionate about God! If you can keep your eyes fixed on God and move forward, nothing is impossible with God. Words are the most discouraging thing. Even with your children, don’t put them down using negative words. They will become what you say they are. Always have positive attitude.

2.      When words don’t work, they start using physical threats: I got physically threatened many times. We will see the victory, please don’t give up. Don’t make excuses, get through. Even people who don’t know God work like that. How much more should Christians be determined to go where God has called us to go? There are too many Christians giving up too easily these days. Nehemiah 4:11 “Also our enemies said, “Before they know it or see us, we will be right there among them and will kill them and put an end to the work.” Did the walls stop? No way!

3.      Sometimes discouragement can come from your own people: we face that all the time. We get a brilliant idea, and someone will say something discouraging. When we come together, say words of faith to one another. If you have a vision, however slow it may be moving, it will come to pass. I told the church when we were 10 people that we are going to reach 1000 people in the city. Now we haven’t reached a 1000 people yet, but our reach is going further and further. I believe the dream God gave me, we are going to get there. If you can trust God, he will be with us.

4.      Send intimidating letters: Today it is whatsapp Messages. Please don’t give up, we have great things in store. The difference between discouragement and disappointment is that you cannot choose disappointment. But discouragement is a choice. Sometimes you wake up not knowing how you are going to run this race.

5.      Exhaustion brings huge discouragement: Elisha faced this. He brought down fire, and then one woman frightened him. if you don’t refresh yourself in the presence of God, you’re going to have a hard time. How did David get back his strength? He found his strength in God. Whether you business is failing or your child is sick, it can change tomorrow. People get burnt out or overwhelmed with the work and can’t find strength to go on. Find your strength in God 

Q. How can you get out of this discouragement?

1.      Get into the presence of God- he will refresh you. Nehemiah 4:4-5 4:9;6:9- In response to the threats, he would go back into the presence of God.

2.      Don’t stop doing what you are called to do: some people even resign from their jobs when they are discouraged. You never make decisions when you are discouraged. We are building the walls of the city and the lives of the people in the city.

3.      Arm yourselves: Nehemiah 4:13- “Therefore I stationed some of the people behind the lowest points of the wall at the exposed places, posting them by families, with their swords, spears and bows.Never put your armour down. If the devil comes, you have to have your armour on. Ephesians 6: 10-13 says put on the armour of God. They are not going to take a break. We need to alert, be sharp

4.      Encourage one another: When you reach halfway of any project, that’s when we feel down. We need to be careful we don’t give up at that time.

5.      Be united: this is the toughest one for the church. If you put two Christians on an island, there will be 2 churches in 2 months. If we don’t learn to live with one another, it is a bad testimony. The Bible says, you will know they are Christians by their love one for another. Let’s do everything to guard the unity of the spirit. Let’s fight our battles together.

Hebrews 12:3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”. We all go through challenges, but let’s not give up.

  Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.