Daily Meditations Published by IT Fellowship of North America & Europe Diocese of Mar Thoma Church
Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Vs. 2,3 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in
God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house there are many
dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to
prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will
come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may
be also. 4 And you know the way to the place where I am going.”
Once as Christmas was
nearing, a Judge questioned the man who had been brought into his
courtroom. "Now then, please tell me, what is the charge
against you?". " I was caught doing my Christmas shopping
very early." replied the man in the dock. "That doesn't
seem like an offense to me. What do you mean by 'very early?
"Well, your Honor." said the defendant, "It was before the
shop was open."
Sometimes the hustle and
bustle of the Christmas season overwhelms us to the point we lose our
true focus. The message of Christmas is that our Savior has come
but, it is also a reminder to us that Jesus Christ will come again.
Throughout the season of Advent, the Church prepares to "receive her
King" our triumphant Lord who will return. It is this faith
that enables us to see Christmas not just as another holiday but, as an
enduring testimony of God's faithfulness, love and promise of salvation for
all humanity. As we recognize Mar Thoma Church day during this
time, we affirm that Christ Jesus has chosen us to truly be the Church,
His living and loving Body in the world. We may understand Advent
more as we relate it to the given passage.
Advent, Assurance of Acceptance
In this passage, before Jesus
Christ is crucified He comforts His disciples by offering them a vision
of eternity and life anew. Jesus says that He is going to "His
Father's house" where there are "many rooms". As
Christ attributes the house and rooms therein to the Heavenly Father God,
Jesus communicates its eternal significance. That is, it is the
promise of a place for the believer within the divine abode of God.
In one essence, this was also the hope of the faithful in the Old Testament
vocalized by the psalmist in the Psalm 15, "Who may dwell in your
sacred tent? Who may live on your holy mountain?" Jesus Christ
assures His disciples, though finite and mortal, that in their experience
of faith they have been graciously granted acceptance and space with the
infinite and immortal God. Advent reminds us powerfully this
Christmas season that the birth of Christ Jesus ushered forth an
outpouring of divine grace; a grace that challenges us to prepare
ourselves for the promised eternity. Our Lord God Jesus Christ who
entered this world as a babe was offered no space and "His own
did not receive Him". Yet, it is this Jesus Christ, Love
Incarnate, who assures His disciples and the faithful a place and loving
reception in eternity.
Advent, Promise of Divine Presence
The miraculous incarnation of
Jesus Christ reveals the love of God and His divine intention to bond
with humanity in intimate relationship. In this passage, Christ
Jesus states "I will come back and take you to be with me that you
also may be where I am". In these words we find the
epitome of relationship that is characterized by oneness of dwelling with
Christ. It is an everlasting and candid relationship where there
are no constraints of space, time or boundaries. God entered creation
to be with humanity and showed the way, truth and life humanity could be
with Him. Advent affirms this promise that the love of God
beckons us to the true fellowship and dwelling in His divine
presence. It is the tremendous faith that the believer shall never
be separate from God in this life or in eternity to come. The
promise is so powerful because when humanity moved away God, He moved
closer to humanity to the point of incarnation and sacrificial
death. The season of Advent and Christmas challenges us to relate
to God deeper and witness His presence always.
Are you ready to just celebrate Christmas or Christ?
Lord God, help us to adorn humility, practice love,
foster faith and witness peace so our hearts would prepare Him room as
heaven and nature sing. Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
“You can never truly enjoy Christmas until you can look
up into the Father’s face and tell Him you have received His Christmas
gift.” John R. Rice Rev.
Jaisen Thomas, St. Thoma MTC, Yonkers, NY
Christian Education Forum,
Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church
PRIESTHOOD: THE ANOINTED MINISTRY Exodus 40:12-16 Bring Aaron and his sons to the entrance to the Tent of Meeting... wash them with water. Then dress Aaron in the sacred garments, anoint him and consecrate him so he may serve me as priest (Exodus 40: 12-13). Priesthood among the people of God was a divine command and initiation. God wanted some people to be separated for the special ministry among his people. God appointed Aaron and his descendants to take up this kind of ministry among the people of God. Priests are always separated and appointed as channels that connect God with his people. All throughout the history of Israel, priests played an important role in connecting people with God and to lead and guide them in the statutes of God. But there are incidents in the Bible where the priests failed in their duties and that led the people to go away from God. So the priests have a special and significant ministry to perform in this world among his people. Two important things
Revelation for Liberation Acts 27:18-26 Sherine Thomas Long Island MTC, NY 20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small tempest raged, all hope of our being saved was at last abandoned. “After winter comes the summer. After night comes the dawn. And after every storm, there comes clear open skies” so said a Scottish clergyman from the 1600s. It’s been said, that hope can sometimes be the most dangerous weapon. However, it’s sometimes the hardest weapon to carry when you’re living with the loss of a loved one, something that almost feels like a terrible nightmare that’ll never go away. It’s a weapon difficult to carry when day in and day out no one seems to hear or see those tears that are shed or silent cries that are made during a heartfelt prayer. It’s a weapon difficult to carry as you see your loved one lying on that hospital bed. It’s a weapon difficult to carry as you search and seek out answers to tell a child as to why they’ve been a
Community Formation Around Resurrection Experience Acts 23:1-10 Vinod Johnson Carmel MTC, Boston, MA 6 When Paul noticed that some were Sadducees and others were Pharisees, he called out in the council, “Brothers, I am a Pharisee, a son of Pharisees. I am on trial concerning the hope of the resurrection of the dead.” Sometimes, the only thing that keeps you going through a brutal winter is the hope for the spring. It may have been a hard hope to hold on to this particular year in New England - a year in which Boston considered dumping not tea, but the ever growing mounds of snow into its harbor. And yet, the waist deep snow has dissolved away. White desolation has given way to increasingly visible green shoots of spring. A resurrection is at hand! In this passage, Paul tries to defend himself before the Sanhedrin Council. He seeks to drive a wedge between the Pharisees who believed in resurrection and the Sadducees who did not; even though neither believed in the resur