From the Vicar's Desk
DEARLY BELOVED IN CHRIST,
As we are in the second quarter of the year, it is an important period for our student folk as they face annual and semester exams and other eligibility tests these days. I wish them all the very best for their exams and wishing a very successful and fruitful life.
Here I would like to meditate upon the message of Prophet Joel. The name Joel meaning “The Lord is God.” Joel was the son of Pethuel who ministered to the people of Israel during the reign of King Joash. He ministered during a time of a severe plague of locusts and the Prophet sees it as a judgment from God on Israel’s disobedience and injustice. Joel, Isaiah, Ezekiel and Zachariah (Joel 2:28-32; Isa. 32:15; 44:3; Eze. 36:26-27; 37:14; Zech12:10-13:1) all speaks of the Holy Spirit upon all flesh. The message of Prophet Joel is very clear that one should sanctify oneself.
1. Sanctify Fasting (1:14; 2:15)
2. Sanctify the Congregation (2:16)
The word ‘sanctify’ here mentions a meaning, to set something apart for a sacred use. In other words, giving up the old meaningless deeds and words aside and becoming a new creation is a prophetic call always.
What Should I give up? Is a common question most of us ask!
Non-veg? Chocolates? Ice creams? Beverages? Alcohol? Of course, all these! At the same time, we should also give up:
1. Give Up Complaining- But Focus on Gratitude (Phi. 2:14-15; 1Thess. 5:18)
2. Give Up Bitterness- But hold on forgiveness (Eph. 4:31,32)
3. Give Up Worry- But hold on Trust in God (Math. 6:25&33)
4. Give Up Discouragement – Be full of Hope (Deut. 31:8; Is. 40:31)
5. Give Up Hatred – return Good for Evil (1John 2:9; Lk. 6:27)
6. Give Up Anger – Be More Patient (Math. 5:22; Pro.15:18)
7. Give Up Gossiping – Control our Tongues (Ps. 34:13; Pro. 21:23)
Prophet Joel rightly invoked the people of Israel that “Tear your hearts and not your Clothes.” (Joel 2:13). Therefore, let these Lenten Days be a time of renewal of hearts and thoughts to do justice in our God given opportunities and vocations. May the Almighty Lord bless all!
With prayer and love
Skaria Mathew Achen & Family (Vicar)