Shedding Light Moments

Shedding Light Moment 5th December 2022.
(Luke 2:25-32).
Most people long for something to make their existence more meaningful and more fulfilling.
Unlike Simeon, who we read about in Luke 2, many people don’t know what will bring happiness. The Holy Spirit had revealed to Simeon that he would not die until he had seen the promised Messiah. When that day came and Simeon came to meet Jesus, peace and a real contentment were guaranteed.
All around us are people who could have that same peace and contentment if they could just meet Jesus. As we see the crowds each day, we should be reminded to pray that the Holy Spirit would touch their hearts and make them want to see Jesus. They may be rushing around, but in their hearts many have a void waiting to be filled by the Messiah, the Lord Jesus. So ponder this SLM:-
“There is a longing in every heart that only Jesus can satisfy.”
…Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 28th November 2022.
(Galatians 2:15-21); (2 Timothy 2:7-8).
Many folks who are physically disabled are dependent on their helpers to help them run “the race of life”. Without them they just couldn’t do it.
There is a parallel between their story and our own Christian life. Just as they are dependent on their helpers, we are dependent on Christ to complete our Christian race.
As we strive to live a God-pleasing life, we realize that in spite of our best intentions and determination, we often stumble and fall short. By our strength alone, it is impossible. Oh, how we need the Lord’s help! And it has been provided. Paul declares it with these insightful words, “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God”(Gal 2:20).
We cannot finish the Christian race on our own. We have to do so by depending on Jesus living in us. So ponder this SLM:-
“Faith connects our weakness to God’s strength.”
…Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 30th November 2022
(John 14:19-27).
There are times in our lives when we feel emotionally distraught over a crisis.
The Lord Jesus promised us peace in crisis. Just hours before His own crucifixion, Christ comforted His men with these profound words: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid” (John 14:27).
What is your worst fear? If you should face it, Christ will be there with you. Trusting Him through prayer makes available the “peace of God, which transcends all our understanding,” and it “will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”( Phil 4:7).
So ponder this SLM for today:-
“The secret of peace is to give every anxious care to God.”
….Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 2nd December 2022.
(Matthew 27:32-50).
I cannot think of more heart-wrenching words than “My God, my God why have you forsaken me?” Since eternity, Jesus had been in perfect fellowship with God the Father. Together they had created the Universe, fashioned mankind in their image, and planned salvation. Never had they not been in total fellowship with each other.
And now, as the anguish of the cross continued to bring devastating pain on Jesus, He for the first time ever lost the awareness of God’s presence as He carried the burden of the sins of the world.
It was the only way. Only through this time of interrupted fellowship could our salvation be provided for. And it was only because Jesus was willing to experience this sense of being forsaken on the cross that we humans could gain fellowship with God. So ponder this SLM:-
“The cross reveals God’s heart for the lost.”
…Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 21st November 2022.
(John 13:1-20).
Ever wondered why Jesus washed the feet of Judas that night? The one who would perform history’s worst act of treachery.
In this scene Jesus was performing the most menial of tasks for a person who treated the Creator of the universe as being someone worth no more than thirty pieces of silver. Knowingly, the One whose name is associated with giving life got His hands dirty to serve the one whose name would stand for betrayal and death for the rest of time.
Doesn’t Jesus’s example tell us something special about service? It reminds us that we are not called to serve only those who are like us, or even those who care for us? We are called to serve all people—the lovely and the unlovely, the friendly and the not-so-friendly.
So when was the last time you “washed the feet” of someone like Judas?…Ponder then this SLM:-
“It’s difficult to stand on a pedestal and wash the feet of those below”
….Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 23rd November 2022.
(2 Cor 4:1-12).
In verse 6 of today’s reading the apostle Paul wrote these words to those who followed Jesus in the city of Corinth. “For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness’, made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ”. Paul goes on to describe the reality of life in which “we are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed”(vv.8-9).
The truth is that there are times when it seems that the light of God’s face is dimmed because of our difficulty, sorrow, or loss. Yet, even in these dark shadows, we can see evidence of His presence with us.
If we walk in filtered light today, may we discover anew that God’s light–Jesus–is always shining in our hearts. So ponder this SLM:-
“In the darkest of circumstances, God’s light is still shining in our hearts.”
….Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 25th November 2022.
(2 Peter 1:1-11). (2 Peter 3:18).
I wonder if you have ever given thought to the fact, that even if we claim the name of Jesus, it may not be evident to others that we really know Him. So reflect on this question: Do you have a personal relationship with Him? If so, are we striving, praying and working on getting to know Jesus more intimately each day?
Peter, a man who knew Jesus well, said that “the knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ our Lord” will bring us multiplied “grace and peace” (2 Peter 1:2). Knowing Jesus truly gives us “everything we need for a godly life” (v.3). And knowledge of Jesus will help us develop character traits that show the world that we are connected to Him (vv.5-8).
So, can you honestly say, “I know Jesus better today than I did yesterday? And then consider this SLM:-
“The better you know Jesus in your heart, the more the world will see Jesus in your life.”
….Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 14th November 2022.
(Hebrews 9:23-28); (Galatians 1:3-4).
In these days when so many people are insisting on their personal rights, the biblical concept of self-sacrifice may seem ludicrous and old-fashioned.
My grandfather who lost a leg in France in WW1 often said “I didn’t lose it. I gave it”
That describes what Jesus did for us. He didn’t lose His life on the cross. He gave it. In fact Galatians 1:4 says, He “gave himself for our sins”. He paid the penalty so that all who believe on Him would indeed experience the forgiveness of sin and have eternal life. In fulfillment of the Old Testament picture of the sacrifice of the lamb, He yielded His life for us.
Following Christ’s example, we are to give ourselves unselfishly to His service and help others. That makes sense, though it may seem absurd to many. Our sacrifices will glorify the Lord and make an impact for Christ on our selfish world. So ponder this SLM:-
“Christ’s sacrifice of himself for us motivates us to sacrifice ourselves for others.”
…Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 16th November 2022.
(Matthew 1:18-25).
Amy Adams, the actress who plays Lois Lane in the Superman movie Man of Steel says its appeal lies in a basic human longing: “Who doesn’t want to believe that there’s one person who could come and save us from ourselves.?”
The answer to that question, is that someone has already come to save us from ourselves, and that someone is Jesus. We find in the Bible that indeed several announcements were made regarding the birth of Jesus. One of them was from the angel Gabriel to Joseph: “(Mary) will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins” (Matt 1:21).
Jesus came–He did so to save us from our sin and from ourselves. His name means “the Lord saves”–and our salvation was His mission. The longing for rescue that fills the human heart is ultimately met in Jesus. So ponder this SLM:-
“Jesus’s name and mission are the same–he came to save us.”
…Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 18th November 2022.
(Matthew 4:18-25); (Luke 5:32).
The Italian painter Caravaggio received scathing criticism in his day for depicting people of the Bible as common. He really offended church leaders on one occasion by painting Matthew with the physical features of an everyday labourer. But Caravaggio was right about the people of the Bible. Jesus himself grew up in the home of a labourer. When His time came to go public, He was announced by a weather-worn man of the wilderness we know as John the Baptist. His disciples we’re fishermen and common people.
Jesus lived, loved and died for wealthy people too. But by befriending those who had been demon possessed, lepers, fishermen, and even the despised tax collectors, the teacher from Nazareth showed that no one is too poor, too sinful, or too insignificant to be His friend. So ponder the simple thought in today’s SLM:-
“Jesus wants you for a friend.”
…Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 7th November 2022.
(Hebrews 10:19-23). (John 1:12).
Jesus understood what it was like to face the ultimate unkindness of others. The Bible tells us, “He was despised and rejected by mankind”
(Isaiah 53:3). But Jesus was not just a victim of suffering; He also became our advocate. By giving His life, Jesus opened a “new and living way” for us to enter into a relationship with God (Hebrews 10:20). He did for us what we could never do for ourselves, offering us a free gift of salvation when we repent of our sins and trust Him.
Jesus is the best friend we could ever have. He said this in John 6:37 “Whoever comes to me I will never drive away” Others may hold us at arm’s length or even push us away, but God has opened His arms to us through the cross. How strong is our Saviour! So please ponder this SLM:-
“God’s free gift to us cost Him dearly.”
….Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 9th November 2022.
(Matthew 14:22-33).
When Peter saw his Master walking on the water, he obeyed Christ’s invitation to step out of the boat and come to Him. At first, he was of course, supernaturally held up. But then he became preoccupied with his perilous situation— the howling wind and the turbulent waves. Fear gripped his heart, and he began to sink.
We as Christians make similar blunders in our relationship with Jesus. We tend to forget His instructions. Then when trials come, instead of relying on His promises we cling to false securities. Or like Peter, we look at our frightening circumstances and push the panic button.
No matter what happens, let’s keep our eyes on Jesus. We will find Him completely reliable. We need never be afraid to trust Him fully. That said ponder this SLM:-
“You start going down when you stop looking up.”
….Pastor Ross.
Shedding Light Moment 11th November 2022.
(Mark 2:13-17).
I have long believed that making friends and loving people is the key to sharing the gospel wherever we are, because that’s what Jesus did.
Some of the religious leaders of Jesus’ day were surprised when He openly associated with people they actually considered to be most undesirable. They said to His disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?” (Mark 2:16). Yet Jesus was known as the friend of sinners. He said, “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners” (v.17).
A loving heart and a friendly smile go a long way toward communicating the love of Christ to the people we meet each day. May it then, be said of us, “Ever smiling, they make friends wherever they go.” Consider then this SLM:-
“Loving the lost is the first step to leading them to Christ”.
….Pastor Ross.