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Opening Doors

The act of opening doors is a gesture of goodwill, friendship, and kinship. It is also a greeting and an invitation – welcoming a visitor, a guest or kinsman. It is a willing gesture of sharing and fellowship. It is an act of letting the sun in and letting darkness out. When darkness engulfs us, we respond by opening the door to the Son of God. Some have heard the knock on their door, on a night of thick darkness and opened the door – only to hear the caller say – “tend to my sheep.” A bright lamp is in His hand, to light up their path. He keeps His head covered so that the vision of the Creator, may not blind the kind dweller. 

The “sheep,” are our persecuted brethren, living in daily terror, in certain areas of India. Do we hear the knock on our doors? If we do, we may want to try relevant sites: opendoorsusa.org. If the site content causes pessimism, try to verify, and validate. But is all that information without basis? Because timing is a great servant but not a kind master, let us try and answer the call. A problem left untended, can become a chronic reality. Our worst antagonists are the ones who claim that they are born great. We cannot expect them to know the facts of history. Even if they do, they can bend facts to serve their needs. Any kind of procrastination is as productive as barren land. Nothing grows on it. In vain do we carry water to irrigate it – for its final destiny is a wasteful marsh. 

The late Mr. Jeyaraj Thomas, a faithful servant of the Lord, worked hard to serve Him. He even tried to bring together three Asian Indian Christian fellowships, for a united worship service – once or twice a year. He had great support from the senior AICC pastors. We spent many long hours on the phone, trying to make this symbolic event happen. The ‘hidden’ goal was to mentor a team of Elders and Youth leaders, to stand up to India’s political powers, to demand that India’s Christian population (particularly recent converts) have full rights to worship their God and Savior. There are many peaceful ways to negotiate with cruel and ill-informed regimes. But before we ask that doors should open; we must project unity and build structure. The late Mr. Jeyaraj Thomas was way ahead of his times. Should we not follow his example – given the gravity of the situation? 

The old year has thankfully faded and moved into virtual archives. And now, the gift of a New Year has been ushered in. Did the silent Usher wear a sober black suit and pure white gloves? So, should we then, mute our breath and blink back our tears of joy or just wipe away tears of trepidation? We may instead, want to turn to the Biblical Help menu. Let us scroll down to the books dictated by prophets like Jeremiah, Isaiah, Ezekiel – as they had been dictated to them by the only living Divine Poet, Jehovah God, our Father in Heaven. Then, remember to slide home to the first and second Kings. 

With the armor plate of the Word, and knees that will bend to no Man, except to the Lamb of God, who now transformed is a ferocious Lion of Judah; His eyes burning like fire. Let each young parent, choose which child of theirs, will carry the Lord’s words of fire to the hard-hearted Pharaoh, in each land of persecution. The Lord will pour steel into our knees, to stiffen them. Like Daniel, we will not bend our knees to any worshipper of lifeless ‘Gods’. Remember we share the promise made to Abraham, by the sacrifice, death, and resurrection of the One who chose us, the former Gentiles. Remember therefore, the plight of ‘Gentiles’ living in lands of persecution. If we open doors, many more will open in return. 

-REGGIE RAO

March 1, 2024

From Pastor's Desk

Mark for Everyone

I am glad we are reading through the gospel of Mark for our Lenten meditations. This gospel is one of many favorites. I recommend this to the confirmation candidates as they prepare to be accepted into the full membership of the church. The gospel is like a movie trailer that moves from one scene to … Continue reading “Mark for Everyone”

February 1, 2024

From Pastor's Desk

REND YOUR HEARTS AND NOT YOUR GARMENTS

12“Even now,” declares the LORD, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.” 13 Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity. (Joel :2:12-13). Interestingly, this … Continue reading “REND YOUR HEARTS AND NOT YOUR GARMENTS”

January 1, 2024

From Pastor's Desk

TRINITY IN THE CHRISTMAS STORY and BEYOND

The Trinity simply stated is about the three persons of the God head – the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. God is seen as the creator, the Son, the redeemer, and the Holy Spirit, as the sustainer. When one reads the birth narratives in both Matthew and Luke, we only seem to focus on the … Continue reading “TRINITY IN THE CHRISTMAS STORY and BEYOND”

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